Home / News / India /  Crises show multilateral development finance is key: Sitharaman
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Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday pointed out that the current pandemic induced economic crisis and the looming climate crisis have reinforced the urgency for supplementing country efforts with multilateral development finance.  

Speaking at the 6th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) via video conference, Sitharaman urged the China led multilateral development bank to explore investment opportunities in the creation and development of assets in social infrastructure sectors; further intensify private sector capital mobilisation for inclusive and green development; and set up a resident board and regional offices to ensure accountability, transparency and quality of operations and investments. 

Sitharaman in her intervention in the Governor’s Roundtable Discussion on the theme “COVID-19 Crisis and Post-COVID Support", appreciated AIIB’s prompt actions in providing financial support to member countries, including India, in their efforts to contain and combat covid-19. The Finance Minister stated that the social protection and economic stimulus packages brought out by the Government of India, along with timely structural reforms in various sectors, have been pivotal in India’s economic recovery process. “The stimulus packages, including the credit guarantee scheme for micro finance institutions, boosters for project exports through National Export Insurance Account, additional subsidies for fertilizers, free food grains for 800 million people under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, and several welfare schemes with a strong public health focus, helped to effectively and efficiently boost the economy and protect lives and livelihoods, especially of the poor and vulnerable," she said.  

India is a founding member and the second largest shareholder in AIIB. India also has one of the largest project portfolios within AIIB. This year’s Annual Meeting has been jointly organized by AIIB and the Government of United Arab Emirates on the theme of “Investing Today and Transforming Tomorrow". 

India was involved from the very beginning in discussions to set up AIIB to improve infrastructure connectivity in Asia and signed a memorandum of understanding to join negotiations for the proposed multilateral development bank in October 2014 along with 21 other nations. 

In January 2016, it became a founding member of AIIB along with 57 countries. AIIB’s membership has grown to 102 countries. While India owns 83,673 shares with capital subscription of $8.4 billion in AIIB, China owns 297,804 shares with $29.8 billion capital subscription.

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