The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a multilateral development bank led by China with an aim to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia Pacific region, has approved seven new member countries to join the bank, bringing the bank’s total membership to 77.
Three regional members, Bahrain, Cyprus and Samoa, and four non-regional members, Bolivia, Chile, Greece and Romania, are the latest members approved to join the AIIB, it said in an announcement.
“More and more countries are signing up to be members of AIIB because they see how internationalism can promote development in Asia, with far reaching benefits for the global economy,” said Jin Liqun, president of AIIB. “We welcome our new prospective members and thank them for joining us in our efforts to meet infrastructure needs in the region.”
The seven prospective members will officially join AIIB once they complete the required domestic processes and deposit their first installment of capital with the Bank. The shares allocated to the new prospective members come from the bank’s existing pool of unallocated shares.
AIIB had 57 signatories at its launch in January 2016. In March, it announced the approval of 13 prospective members who are currently in the process of finalizing their membership. The bank expects to continue adding new members this year.
Earlier this month, AIIB approved a loan of US$160 million to finance a project aimed at strengthening power transmission and distribution systems in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. In March, AIIB approved three loans totaling US$285 million to finance water supply projects in Indonesia and improve a gas transmission network in Bangladesh.