UAE joins Chinese-led bank AIIB
The UAE said on Sunday that it had become a prospective founding member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), an initiative proposed by Chinese President, Xi Jinping, Press TV reported.
"With the AIIB's objectives being closely associated with the capabilities of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, the UAE's Leadership has mandated the fund to represent the UAE on AIIB's Board of Governors," said Dr Sultan Bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, UAE's minister of state.
He has led discussions on behalf of the UAE with his Chinese counterpart, Shi Yaobin, Vice-Minister for the Ministry of Finance, and was instrumental in arranging the UAE's membership of the AIIB, the Gulf News reported.
"This milestone has been possible due to the wise directives and unlimited support of the UAE's leadership. In the light of joint strategic ties between the UAE and China, and their mutual interests in fuelling growth and infrastructure development in developing countries, both countries have partnered to set up a strong international platform to actively drive development efforts," Dr Al Jaber said.
The UAE joins 34 other prospective founding members of the bank. They include Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Egypt and Jordan from the Middle East. Asian members include China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea and Singapore.
This comes as concerns are already rising in Washington over growing applications by countries - many of them hardcore US allies - to join the AIIB. The long list of countries that have announced they will join the bank includes Australia, the Netherlands, Brazil, Britain, France, Germany and Italy.
The AIIB- which is seen as an emerging rival to powerful Western-led financial institutions such as the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the International Monetary Fund - is feared by the White House to be a new policy by Beijing to increase the influence of the world's second largest economy at regional and international levels.
It is expected to announce an initial subscribed capital of $50 billion and focus on supporting infrastructure projects across Asia.