00:17 GMT04 March 2021
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    The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved applications from Argentina, Madagascar and Tonga to join the development bank initiated by China, the bank said in a statement Friday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — According to the bank’s statement, the three prospective members will officially join AIIB once they complete the required domestic processes and deposit the first installment of capital with the Bank. The shares allocated to the new prospective members come from the bank’s existing pool of unallocated shares.

    "The Board of Governors has adopted resolutions approving three applicants to join the Bank, bringing the Bank’s total approved membership to 80. This round of approved applicants includes one regional and two non-regional prospective members," the bank’s statement read.

    The bank's president, Jin Liqun, characterized Argentina and Madagascar as "important economies in South America and Africa, respectively" noting that "Tonga is well known as the Friendly Islands in the South Pacific."

    "I look forward to the role our new members will play once they fully join the Bank," the president said.

    At its launch in January 2016, there were 57 signatories to AIIB’s Articles of Agreement, and in March and May 2017, the bank announced the approval of another 20 prospective members, who are currently in the process of finalizing their membership. The bank expects to continue welcoming new members to join later this year.


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