Facebook Twitter 新浪微博 Instagram YouTube Friday, Jan. 15, 2016

AIIB to open Saturday amid high expectations

By Liang Jun (People's Daily Online)    16:01, January 15, 2016
AIIB to open Saturday amid high expectations
(File Photo)

The highly anticipated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) will open for business on Jan. 16. As of the end of 2015, when it was formally established, a total of 57 countries had signed inter-governmental agreements, and the first batch of loans is expected to be approved by the middle of this year.

The AIIB, the first multilateral financial institution launched by China, will provide new opportunities for countries inside and outside of Asia. Government officials and economic experts expressed confidence that the AIIB is going to play an active role in international economic governance, global financing and regional economic cooperation.

Among the 57 founding members, 19 are Asian countries. Backward infrastructure hinders economic development of this region.

Data from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) projects that, from 2010 to 2020, Asian countries will need $800 billion to invest in infrastructure construction every year. The current international financial institutions such as the World Bank and the ADB cannot meet the huge demand for infrastructure investment in developing Asian countries.

Indonesia is the largest economy in Southeast Asia, but its seriously outdated infrastructure greatly impairs its international competitiveness. In an exclusive interview for People’s Daily, Li Zhuohui, chairman of the ASEAN Foundation, said that the country is in urgent need of a partner such as the AIIB, and he believes the AIIB will contribute heavily to new construction and stimulate the economic potential of many countries in this region.

Similarly, Central Asian countries are in bad need of an infrastructure upgrade, but they lack sufficient funding. Many expect the AIIB to help to solve this problem, including the President of Kazakhstan via the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies, who offered this opinion to People's Daily.

The AIIB will also play an important role in poverty reduction in Asia. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim has said that anyone concerned about issues of poverty and inequality should welcome this kind of bank, which will help developing countries develop their economies and create new jobs.

The AIIB will boost economic growth, infrastructure development and investment throughout Asia, which will undoubtedly play a role in poverty alleviation, said the chief researcher of the Korea International Trade Association.

Along with the One Belt, One Road initiative, the AIIB will have a far-reaching impact on the economic development of involved countries.

Senior researcher Chen Gang, with the East Asia Institute at the National University of Singapore, believes that the AIIB will improve the interconnectedness of ASEAN countries and help accelerate the pace of ASEAN integration.

Dr. Ramon Pacheco Pardo, a lecturer in the Department of European and International Studies of King's College in London, holds the view that few countries like Britain can get so big an opportunity from the AIIB.

The Russian Far East and Siberia region will also benefit from the regional infrastructure construction, said the chief researcher at the Institute for Fiscal Science of the Russian Ministry of Finance.

China proposed the creation of the AIIB back in 2013 and it was formally approved last year. A ceremony to inaugurate the new lending institution will be held in Beijing on Jan. 16.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Liang Jun,Wu Chengliang)

Add your comment

Related reading

We Recommend

Most Viewed


Key Words