Egypt seeks to join China-based AIIB

AFP , Monday 30 Mar 2015

Egypt wants to join Beijing-back Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank "AIIB"

China's President Xi Jinping guides guests at the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank launch ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing October 24, 2014. (Photo:Reuters)

Egypt is interested in joining the Beijing-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the foreign ministry spokesman said on Monday.

Australia, Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Russia have all said they intend to join the bank, despite scepticism about the AIIB in Washington and Tokyo.

China and 20 other countries signed a memorandum of understanding last October to establish the Beijing-headquartered $50 billion AIIB.

"Egypt has applied to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank," foreign ministry spokesman Badr Abdel Atti told AFP.

The new multinational lender is seen as a threat to the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, two institutions under strong US influence.

The United States has voiced concern about whether it would meet international governance, environmental and social standards, with President Barack Obama's administration waging an intense but low-profile lobbying campaign against it.

China is expected to foot the bulk of the initial money needed to get the AIIB started, with donations from other members set to increase the size of the overall fund to more than $100 billion.

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