This is not a particularly large deal, but it is another sign of the continuing erosion of the ad hoc Bretton Woods II currency regime and a growing disorder in global banking. Change is not just coming, it's here.
The usual US public reponse is dismissive: 'where else will they put their money?'
But behind the scenes the US is working very hard on this, often in conjunction with the Banks of England and at times Japan, to move to an alternative in the SDR based on a composition favorable to the dollar and the pound and the yen. Europe is being held off balance by the ratings agencies, suffering from a crisis in leadership and coherent policy. Germany is being urged to accept a 'separate peace' and assume a more powerful and controlling role on the Continent.
A significant area of contention is the petro-dollar, hence the heavy and continuing US military presence in the region.
But don't count out China, Russia, India and South America. Never play checkers when the other guys are playing chess (or Go).
People's Bank of China
January 17, 2012 - People's Bank of China, Dubai and the UAE Central Bank have signed bilateral currency swap agreements, aimed at strengthening bilateral financial cooperation and promote bilateral trade and investment and jointly safeguard regional financial stability.
The 35 billion yuan swap / 200 million dirhams, is valid for three years and may be extended by mutual agreement.