Once fully operational the AIIB will support access to finance for infrastructure projects across Asia, using a variety of support measures, including loans, equity investments, and guarantees, to boost investment across a range of sectors including transportation, energy, telecommunication, agriculture and urban development. This support can complement the work already done in the region by existing Multilateral Development Banks such as the World Bank and Asian Development Bank.
As the first major Western country to apply to become a prospective member of the AIIB, the UK will join discussions later this month with other founding members to agree the Bank's prospective Articles of Agreement, setting out the governance and accountability arrangements that underpin the AIIB's operating practices.
As part of these discussions the UK will play a key role in ensuring that the AIIB embodies the best standards in accountability, transparency and governance, which will be essential to ensuring the success of the initiative and to unlocking the potential benefits for the wider global economy.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne said:
I am delighted to announce today that the UK will be the first major Western country to become a prospective founder member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, which has already received significant support in the region.
This government has actively promoted closer political and economic engagement with the Asia-Pacific region and forging links between the UK and Asian economies to give our companies the best opportunity to work and invest in the world's fastest growing markets is a key part of our long term economic plan. Joining the AIIB at the founding stage will create an unrivalled opportunity for the UK and Asia to invest and grow together.
New Zealand became on January 5th the 24th nation to sign on and join as a founding member the AIIB. Previously, in November 2014, we reported that Indonesia had decided to join the AIIB and one month before twenty-one Asian countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to establish the AIIB.