ADB congratulates the opening of China-led AIIB development bank

January 18, 2016 OPINION/NEWS

By

Sheuli Akter

On the occasion of the establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) with its official launching in Beijing, Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Takehiko Nakao has sent his congratulations to the AIIB founding members, Jin Liqun, who was just officially made the first president of AIIB, and the staff of the multilateral secretariat who have been preparing the establishment of this new institution.

The AIIB was established as a new multilateral financial institution aimed at providing “financial support for infrastructure development and regional connectivity in Asia.” It was founded in October, 2014, and will have its headquarters in Beijing. Its goals are also to boost economic development in the region, create wealth, prove infrastructure, and promote regional cooperation and partnership.

The value of AIIB’s authorized capital amounts to $100 billion, with almost $30 billion invested by China. The bank, which unites 57 member states, expects to lend $10 billion to $15 billion a year for the first five years of its operations, beginning in the second quarter of 2016.

“ADB will cooperate closely with AIIB in supporting the development of the Asia Pacific region, drawing on ADB’s 50 years of experience and expertise and with an extensive network of 31 field offices in developing member countries” Nakao was quoted as saying in a statement from the Manila-based ADB.

According to the ADB statement received on Sunday, Nakao met with Jin twice last year, first in Baku in May during the ADB’s Annual Meeting, and second in Beijing in September.

It said they agreed to the need to fill a large infrastructure gap in the Asia and Pacific region, the critical role of infrastructure in supporting sustainable development and poverty reduction, and the importance of strong policies to ensure the environmental and social sustainability of projects.

ADB said it has been assisting the Multilateral Secretariat throughout last year to prepare the new institution’s various operational policies such as guidelines for environmental and social safeguards and for procurement.

According to the statement, ADB has started identifying potential co-financing projects with AIIB in such areas as transport, renewable energy, urban and water. Preparations are underway so that an ADB co-financed project would be among the first batch of projects to be financed by AIIB when it starts its lending operations by mid-2016.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members – 48 from the region. In 2014, ADB assistance totaled $22.9 billion, including co-financing of $9.2 billion.

 

 

 

 

 

Sheuli Akter

Sheuli Akter, from Bangladesh, is a Special Correspondent and Editor of NsNewsWire, (Bangladesh’s First Press Newswire).  Previously she had worked for Bangladesh’ top news agency, United News of Bangladesh (UNB) and top newspaper (now defunct) The Bangladesh Observer. She also gained an honourable mention in the first ever World Media Summit WMS Awards for ‘Exemplary News Professionals in Developing Countries’, receiving the award in Beijing in January 2015.

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