Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) Part I

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a multilateral development bank with a  mission to improve social and economic outcomes in Asia.  

  • Headquartered in Beijing, began operations in January 2016 and have now grown to  102 approved members worldwide.  
  • By investing in sustainable infrastructure and other productive sectors in Asia and beyond with an intention of connecting people, services and markets that over time will impact the lives of billions and build a better future. 
  • The bank currently has 78 members as well as 24 prospective members from around the  world 
  • The United Nations has addressed the launch of AIIB as having potential for "scaling up financing for sustainable development" and to improve the global economic governance. 
  • The starting capital of the bank was $100 billion, equivalent to 2⁄3 of the capital of the  Asian Development Bank and about half that of the World Bank. 
  • Fourteen of the G-20 nations are AIIB members including France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.  
  • By investing in sustainable infrastructure and other productive sectors in Asia and beyond, it will better connect people, services and markets that over time will impact the lives of billions and build a better future. 

Goals 

  • To foster sustainable economic development, create wealth and improve infrastructure connectivity in Asia by investing in infrastructure and other productive sectors.
  • To promote regional cooperation and partnership in addressing development challenges by working in close collaboration with other multilateral and bilateral development institutions. 
  • To promote investment in the public and private capital for development purposes, in particular for the development of infrastructure and other productive sectors.
  • To utilize the resources at its disposal for financing such development in the region, including those projects and programs which will contribute most effectively to the  harmonious economic growth of the region;
  • To encourage private investment in projects, enterprises and activities contributing to economic development in the region when private capital is not available on reasonable terms and conditions. 

Governance 

Board of Governors 

- The Board of Governors consists of one Governor and one Alternate Governor appointed by each member country. 

  • Governors and Alternate Governors serve at the pleasure of the appointing member. All the powers of the AIIB are vested in the Board of Governors.
  • The Board of Governors may delegate to the Board of Directors any or all its powers,  except the power to: 
  • admit new members and determine the conditions of their admission;
  • increase or decrease the authorized capital stock of the Bank; 
  • Elect the Directors of the Bank and determine the expenses to be paid for  Directors and Alternate Directors and remuneration; 
  • elect the President, suspend or remove him from office, and determine his  remuneration and other conditions of service; 
  • approve, after reviewing the auditors’ report, the general balance sheet and the  statement of profit and loss of the Bank; 
  • amend the 'AIIB Articles of Agreement'
  • Annual Meeting 
  • The first AIIB Board of Governors meeting was held in Beijing, China in 2016.
  • The second was held in Jeju, Korea in 2017 and the third was held in Mumbai, India in 2018
  • On July 12-13, 2019 Luxembourg hosted AIIB’s first Annual Meeting to be held outside Asia. 
  • The theme of the 2019 Annual Meeting is “Cooperation and Connectivity” in recognition of the economic and social benefits to be realized through better connectivity within and between countries and regions, including Europe and Asia. 

Board of Directors 

  • The Board of Directors are composed of twelve members who shall not be members of  the Board of Governors, and of whom: 
  • nine are elected by the Governors representing regional members; and 
  • three are elected by the Governors representing non-regional members
  • Directors of the Board are persons of high competence in economic and financial matters. 
  • Directors represent members whose Governors have elected them as well as members whose Governors assign their votes to them.
  • Board of Directors is a non-resident Board to reduce operating cost.
  • It is responsible for the direction of the Bank’s general operations, exercising all powers delegated to it by the Board of Governors. This includes:  
  • approving the Bank’s strategy, annual plan and budget; 
  • establishing policies; 
  • taking decisions concerning Bank operations; 
  • and supervising management and operation of the Bank and establishing an oversight mechanism. 

Senior Management 

  • AIIB staff is headed by the President who is elected by AIIB shareholders for a five-year term and eligible for reelection once. 
  • The President is supported by Senior Management which includes five Vice Presidents  responsible for:  
  • policy and strategy 
  • investment operations, finance 
  • administration and the corporate secretariat and the General Counsel
  • Chief Risk Officer and Chief Programmer Officer 

International Advisory Panel (IAP) 

  • The Bank has established an IAP to support the President and Senior Management on the Bank’s strategies and policies as well as on general operational issues. 
  • The President selects and appoints members of the IAP to an initial two-year term,  which can be renewed upon completion. 
  • The Panel meets at least twice a year, once in tandem with the Bank’s Annual Meeting,  and the second time at the Bank’s Headquarters in Beijing. 
  • Panellists receive a small honorarium and do not receive a salary. The Bank pays the reasonable costs associated with Panel meetings. 

Membership 

  • Membership in the AIIB is open to all members of the World Bank or the Asian  Development Bank and is divided into regional and non-regional members.
  • Regional members are those located within areas classified as Asia and Oceania by the United Nations
  • Unlike other MDBs (multilateral development bank), the AIIB allows for non-sovereign entities to apply for AIIB membership, assuming their home country is a member.
  • Thus, sovereign wealth funds (such as the China Investment Corporation) or state-owned enterprises of member countries could potentially join the Bank.


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Blog Post written by:
Anurag Trivedi
UPSC Mentor