India elected to Board of Directors of China-backed AIIB

January 17, 2016 09:42 pm | Updated September 23, 2016 01:00 am IST - Beijing

India, one of the founding members of the AIIB, has been elected to the board of directors of the China-sponsored Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank which is expected to begin loan approvals before the end of this year.

The bank, however, said the Vice President the post for which India as the second largest shareholder aspired for will be selected on merit.

“With regard to senior positions like Vice President and Director Generals the basic principle is meritocracy. This can never ever be compromised,” former Chinese Finance Minister Jin Liqun who was elected to be the President of the bank told the media here.

“I would try to avoid creating senior positions just for the sake meeting the needs of some other countries because that would lead to redundancies in future,” Jin said.

Earlier, Dinesh Sharma, Additional Secretary of Ministry of Finance was elected to the 12-member board for which a secretballot was held yesterday, Indian officials said.

This will be the first board of directors for the new bank in which 57 members joined founding members.

Noting that people “up the standard” will be selected for the post, Jin said the interests of the smaller shareholders also can not be ignored.

Jin, a former Chinese Finance Minister was elected to head the bank based in Beijing after Russia withdrew its candidate.

“We have a number of major shareholders, China, India, Russia, Korea, Indonesia and some others. We certainly think it is very much important for AIIB to work very closely with major shareholders but we should not overlook the importance of the other smaller shareholders,” he said.

The election of India to board of directors of the AIIB expected to provide significant role for it as it is the forum that approves the loans for projects.

About the Vice President post Sharma on Saturday said that India has “argued” to get the post based on its shareholding.

He said “personally I was happy to lose that argument,” as New Delhi in the past has objected to such a practice in the World Bank and IMF.

AIIB was formally launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping at a special function here on Saturday.

The inaugural meeting of the board of the governors of the bank which concluded today has approved by-laws, rules and codes of conduct for the bank.

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