The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank said Thursday it has approved 13 applicants, including Canada, Hong Kong and Sudan, to join the China-led institution launched about a year ago, expanding its membership to 70.
The new members will officially become part of the Beijing-headquartered bank once they complete necessary procedures. As widely expected, the number of AIIB members is now set to outstrip that of the Asian Development Bank, led by Japan and the United States, which has 67 members.
It is the first time the Board of Governors of the AIIB has approved new members since it formally started operations in January last year with an authorized capital stock of $100 billion and 57 founding members.
“The interest in joining (the) AIIB from around the world affirms the rapid progress we have made to establish the bank as an international institution,” Jin Liqun, head of the lender, said in a statement.
Aside from Canada, Hong Kong and Sudan, the other prospective AIIB members are: Afghanistan, Armenia, Belgium, Ethiopia, Fiji, Hungary, Ireland, Peru, East Timor and Venezuela.
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