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U.S. respects Taiwan's bid to join China-proposed AIIB: AIT

U.S. respects Taiwan's bid to join China-proposed AIIB: AIT

Taipei, March 31 (CNA) The United States respects Taiwan's decision to apply to join the proposed China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) said Tuesday, but added that the U.S. is not considering joining. "We respect the right of each economy to make its own decision based on its own priorities and interests," said AIT spokesman Mark Zimmer, when asked to comment on Taiwan's intention to join the AIIB. The AIT represents U.S. interests in Taiwan in the absence of bilateral diplomatic ties. "We do believe that any economy participating in the AIIB should insist upon the same core standards that the international community has established in the existing multilateral development banks, especially governance and environmental and social safeguards," he added. A national security meeting a day earlier presided over by President Ma Ying-jeou (???) came to a decision that Taiwan will submit a letter of intent on joining the AIIB. It was decided at the meeting that the Ministry of Finance will draft the letter and submit it for approval by the Executive Yuan. The Mainland Affairs Council, the country's top China policy planning body, will then submit it to the Interim Secretariat for Establishing the AIIB through the Taiwan Affairs Office under China's State Council. After Taiwan expressed its wish to take part in the AIIB over the weekend, China gave a positive response. So far, more than 40 countries have expressed a desire to join the AIIB, including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Australia, Russia and Switzerland. Asked if the U.S. will follow suit, Zimmer said that "the U.S. is not considering joining any new institution at the moment." "At this time, we are focusing on meeting our commitments to the existing multilateral development banks," he said. The U.S., like the rest of the international community, has a stake in seeing the AIIB complement and work effectively alongside the existing multilateral financial institutions, he added. Initiated by China, the AIIB is regarded by some as a potential rival to the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), all of which are institutions dominated by developed countries such as the U.S. The AIIB, which will aim to support infrastructure development projects in Asia, is expected to be set up by the end of this year. (By Elaine Hou)


Updated : 2021-09-24 07:39 GMT+08:00