The European Investment Bank (EIB) hosted the Bridge Forum Dialogue Conference on ‘The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and cooperation between Europe and Asia’, with Rt Hon Sir Danny Alexander, Vice President, Corporate Secretary of the AIIB, as guest speaker.

Andrew McDowell, Vice President of the EIB, introduced the speaker on behalf of the Bridge Forum Dialogue and the EIB, and the key issues to be addressed in the talk and next week’s AIIB annual meeting in Luxembourg.

He highlighted the importance of the close relationship between the EIB, the AIIB and other International Financing Institutions as a central component in the global architecture for financing sustainable connectivity.

As the relationship between the European Union and Asia continues growing in significance, ties are expected to increase in the coming years.

He said ‘Collaboration amongst Multilateral Development Banks is essential considering the investment levels required to deliver the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Working together as a system, we can indeed help move the dial.’

Sir Danny Alexander gave a broad overview of the AIIB’s structure, ownership and achievements to date. He recalled that the AIIB is the first new multilateral development bank of the 21st century. Headquartered in Beijing, with 97 member countries from around the world, AIIB began operations in 2016.

Its mandate is to finance infrastructure projects that support the sustainable economic development of Asia as well as to foster deeper international co-operation to support that aim.

The AIIB is empowered to deploy a wide range of instruments including sovereign and non-sovereign loans, equity investments, and guarantees. The AIIB’s members have endowed the Bank with $100 billion equity capital to carry out these functions.

The Speaker commented that Luxembourg was the first EU country to commit to joining the AIIB.

Luxembourg is also the first European host of the AIIB Annual Meeting that will take place on July 12-13 under the theme “Cooperation and Connectivity” during which more than 1,500 Ministers, Senior Government Officials, Business leader and media will discuss future investment and strategic issues.