Klaus Segbers in South China Morning Post

Klaus Segbers
Klaus Segbers

Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank does not necessarily trigger global competition

News from Apr 23, 2015

Against the background of the establishment of Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank and following public frame of USA-China competition, Center for Global Politics director Professor Segbers argues this does not necessarily reflect global competition in one article published on South China Morning Post.


“While framing the debate on Asia Infrastructure as a new cold war between a declining superpower, the United States, and a rising future hegemon, China, may serve the public interest in staged showdowns, the reality is far more sober”, argues Professor Segbers.


In this article, Professor Segbers firstly explains Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank emerges from the global imbalance and increasing discontent from emerging economies. Although for a long time, the Bretton Woods system played a huge role, it has also been bearing criticism for it was too close to the national interests of the dominant Western shareholders and ignoring the growing weight of bigger emerging economies, foremost BRICS bloc. For the emerging economies, making changes to the rules regulating the IMF and the World Bank has proven to be very time-consuming. Meanwhile, “the idea of creating a new organization that is more reflective of the interests of the BRICS and other emerging economies is gaining currency”. Against this background, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank is established.


However, “Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank doesn’t deserve to be only viewed as global competition”. The core principles of the bank’s regulating rules are transparency and compliance. As long as these principles are guiding the work of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, in addition to a plausible and lean internal governance structure, “there is not much to be worried about”, argues Professor Segbers.


Besides, “the real focus should be the major aim of the new bank”, that is to fund huge infrastructure investments, like the Silk Road project. In Asia today, like Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, there is a huge demand for development in terms of infrastructure, which should be the main task for the bank.

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