The past summer saw the launch of the Chinese bank of development called the “Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank” (AIIB). Sweden is one of the countries that have chosen to take part in the venture from the start – a hardly uncontroversial decision in and of itself.
On a surface-level, the purpose of AIIB is to increase infrastructural investments in Asia. To Beijing though, AIIB is also an economical-political project intended to increase China’s economical strength in the continent. There is also uncertainty regarding what AIIB will mean to the World Bank’s and the International Monetary Fund’s influence in the world economy. Concerns of AIIB challenging Western norms of democracy and market economy are now starting to arise.
These are some of the topics covered in the new report ”China’s New Bank of Development – A Challenger to Western Norms?”
– AIIB is such a novel project that it’s currently impossible to deduce what the organization will mean to the global political playing field. Since Sweden is a member from the very start, we do have an opportunity to emphasize that the bank’s work should be characterized by transparency, market economy and open competition, says Benjamin Katzeff Silberstein, the author of the report.
– The establishment of AIIB could affect economical and political development in Asia in the future and, by extension, the current global world order. The Swedish membership in AIIB has not been given enough attention. Benjamin Katzeff Silberstein’s report is an important addition to this debate, says Erik Brattberg, in charge of Free World Forum’s global trade and development program.
Benjamin Katzeff Silberstein is a fellow at the Stockholm Free World Forum and a doctorate in history with a focus on East Asian studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Benjamin has previously worked as a political advisor at the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and an editorial writer at Svenska Dagbladet, where he continues to regularly contribute. Benjamin is the author of the book Pictures from North Korea, along with Villy Bergström. His articles have been published in Jane’s Intelligence Review, North Korean Review and The Diplomat, among others.