It was confirmed that the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) which inaugurated earlier this year asked the Korean government if the latter will be able to hold the second annual conference of the AIIB next year. The Korean government is positively considering hosting the event as it will give Korea an opportunity to enhance Korea’s status within the AIIB. Thus, it is likely enough that Korea will host the general meeting.
“Earlier this month, the AIIB Secretariat asked the Korean government whether or not Korea will be able to host the annual general congress next year,” said an official at the Ministry of Strategy and Finance. “Although we have not received an official proposal document, the Korean government is positively considering holding the event in Korea.”
The AIIB is a multilateral development bank established to support Asian countries’ infrastructure investment in January. Korea is a founding member of the AIIB and owns a stake of 3.81 percent, which is the fifth largest after China (30.34 percent), India (8.52 percent), Russia (6.66 percent), and Germany (4.57 percent) among the 57 member countries. The percentage of Korea is the highest among all of Korea’s stakes in any international organizations which Korea has joined so far.
The AIIB will hold its first annual general meeting in Beijing, China this June. The first general conference will make a decision on the venue, time and key agendas of the 2017 general meeting. The Korean government is forecasting that as the AIIB is connected with China’s Land and Sea Silk Road project and massive investments will be made in infrastructure, Korea, a major shareholder, will be able to have many opportunities to take part in infrastructure construction projects.
The Korean government expects that hosting the AIIB general conference will not only further reinforce Korea’s position within the AIIB and service as an opportunity for Korean companies to expand their networks for participation in infrastructure projects in Asia.
Generally, international organizations decide whether or not to hold an annual general meeting three to five years ago. It is said that the AIIB Secretariat sounded out the proposal to Korea since the secretariat did not have much time and Korea is emotionally and economically friendly to them despite Korea’s relatively small stake in the bank.
But not having received any official proposal, the Korean government is going to express strong interest in hosting the general conference after deliberating with the AIIB. But, as countries with higher stakes such as India and Russia are highly likely to take part in competition to host the general meeting, it is still unclear whether or not Korea will be able to catch the ticket to host the event next year.