The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a multilateral development bank (MDB) conceived for the 21st century. Through a participatory process, its founding members are developing its core philosophy, principles, policies, value system and operating platform. The Bank's foundation is built on the lessons of experience of existing MDBs and the private sector. Its modus operandi will be lean, clean and green: lean, with a small efficient management team and highly skilled staff; clean, an ethical organization with zero tolerance for corruption; and green, an institution built on respect for the environment. The AIIB will put in place strong policies on governance, accountability, financial, procurement and environmental and social frameworks.
The AIIB, a modern knowledge-based institution, will focus on the development of infrastructure and other productive sectors in Asia, including energy and power, transportation and telecommunications, rural infrastructure and agriculture development, water supply and sanitation, environmental protection, urban development and logistics, etc. The operational strategy and priority areas of engagement may be revised or further refined by its governing boards in the future as circumstances may warrant.
AIIB will complement and cooperate with the existing MDBs to jointly address the daunting infrastructure needs in Asia. The Bank's openness and inclusiveness reflect its multilateral nature. AIIB welcomes all regional and non-regional countries, developing and developed countries, that seek to contribute to Asian infrastructure development and regional connectivity.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang announced the AIIB initiative during their respective visits to Southeast Asian countries in October 2013. The Bank was envisaged to promote interconnectivity and economic integration in the region and cooperate with existing multilateral development banks.
Following this announcement, bilateral and multilateral discussions and consultations commenced on core principles and key elements for establishing the AIIB. In October, 2014, 22 Asian countries gathered in Beijing to sign Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to establish the AIIB. At a Special Ministerial Meeting following the signing of the MOU, Mr. Jin Liqun was appointed as the Secretary General of the Multilateral Interim Secretariat.
Discussions among Prospective Founding Members (PFMs) on the establishment of AIIB commenced with the 1st Chief Negotiators' Meeting (CNM) in Kunming, China, in November 2014. Discussions about the proposed Articles of Agreement (AOA) were launched at the second CNM, which was held in Mumbai, India, in January 2015. The AOA was discussed further at the 3rd CNM meeting that was held in Almaty, Kazakhstan, in March 2015 and at the 4th CNM meeting which took place in Beijing in April 2015. The final text of the AoA was adopted on May 22, 2015 at the 5th CNM held in Singapore.
Representatives from the 57 PFMs gathered on June 29, 2015 in Beijing at a Signing Ceremony of the Bank's Articles of Agreement at the Great Hall of the People and 50 PFMs signed the Articles, including: Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Egypt, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Republic of Korea, Kyrgyz Republic, Lao PDR, Luxembourg, Maldives, Malta, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam. The Articles remain open for signing by PFMs Until December 31, 2015 and it is expected that the AIIB would be operational by the end of this year.