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Hong Kong, Taiwan seek to join AIIB

Zhao Yinan
Updated: Apr 2,2015 8:34 AM     China Daily

Hong Kong and Taiwan have applied to join the Beijing-initiated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, although their status in the organization after joining is still pending and could only be decided after the charter of the institution is settled.

The Chinese mainland confirmed on April 1 that it had received an application from Taiwan and welcomes Taiwan’s participation in the AIIB-but under an appropriate name.

Ma Xiaoguang, spokesman for the State Council Taiwan Affairs Office, said the office has received Taiwan’s letter of intent to join the AIIB and has transferred the letter to the Multilateral Interim Secretariat for the AIIB.

“The AIIB is open and inclusive,” Ma said. “We welcome Taiwan to participate in the AIIB under an appropriate name.”

Previously, Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who served as the mainland’s top official on the Taiwan question for five years, said the AIIB is a multilateral bank bound by certain rules and procedures. “Further negotiation is needed as to the joining of Hong Kong and Taiwan,” he said. “If Taiwan does join, it should join under a proper name.”

The pending situation also applies to Hong Kong, which also expressed its interest to the Beijing-led bank.

Ceajer Chan Ka-keung, secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury of Hong Kong, told Xinhua News Agency on March 31 that Hong Kong’s role in the multilateral platform could only be decided after the charter of the bank is settled.

At the latest meeting to negotiate the bank’s draft charter in Kazakhstan on March 31, representatives from Hong Kong participated as members of the Chinese delegation.

A statement on the website of the Ministry of Finance said the charter would be open for signatures by midyear.