Nation to join AIIB only if treated equally: Mao
Premier says joining under name ‘China Taipei’ is ‘unacceptable’ Mainland cold on prospect of Taiwan joining the AIIB
Premier Mao Chi-kuo ( ) said yesterday that should Taiwan apply to join the Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in the future, it should be striving to receive equal treatment and to be respected as a country.
Mao made the remarks during an interpellation session at the Legislative Yuan yesterday, when he answered an opposition lawmaker’s question on the issue of Taiwan’s prospective joining.
“If we are not treated respectfully, receive treatment equal to other members, then we may as well not join. There is a bottom line on the name Taiwan is registered under when we do join, and this will be subjected to scrutiny by the people of Taiwan,” said Mao.
Kuomintang Legislator Lin Te-fu ( ) proceeded to ask whether the United States and Japan’s joining of the AIIB would affect Taiwan’s hopes to join, to which Mao answered that the U.S. was seen to be positive about the outcome. “So I don’t think this will become a challenge,” said Mao.
“Joining the AIIB will be an important step for Taiwan as it is merging into the trend that is global economic integration; this would bring business opportunities and prevent Taiwan from being isolated,” said Mao.
Hopefully Joining as ROC
The timing for which Taiwan may join the AIIB would be critical as well, the premier said. “If we become one of the original members, then the need to obtain our rights is necessary and helpful. Only original members may discuss the ground rules, ground rules that will affect members’ rights, obligations and their qualifications ... if Taiwan is not included in these discussions, then there probably won’t be a chance to talk about all these,” said Mao.
Lin brought up the possibility that China may insist for Taiwan to join under the name “China Taipei,” to which Mao said was “unacceptable.”
Should the name be changed to “Chinese Taipei?” Lin asked. “This is the international practice so far, but we will see if there are better chances,” said Mao. “The best possible solution would be for Taiwan to join as the Republic of China.”
Investing US$200 Million
in AIIB: Mao
The application to join AIIB has been sent out yesterday, but not to the Taiwan Affairs Office, said Mao, who also announced that the government will be investing US$200 million in the AIIB project should the nation successfully snag a position in the organization.
In joining the AIIB, Taiwan’s benefits as a country will not be neglected, said Mao.
The AIIB, formally launched by Xi in 2014, is part of China’s efforts to create new financial and economic institutions to boost its international influence. The bank was initially capitalized at US$50 billion, with 50 percent coming from China.
So far, more than 30 countries have applied to join the AIIB.
China confirmed this week that Britain and Switzerland have been formally accepted as founding members of AIIB, following the acceptance of Brazil the previous day.
China signaled on Tuesday that Taiwan would not be allowed to join the Beijingbacked Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), which is seen as a counterweight to the U.S.-based World Bank.
“As for Taiwan joining (the AIIB), we maintain that we should avoid the ‘ two Chinas’ and ‘one China, one Taiwan’ situation,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular briefing.
Taiwan will present a letter of intent to the AIIB preparatory committee, the presidential office in Taipei said Monday following a national security meeting chaired by Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou.
But Beijing regularly proclaims the importance of its “One China” policy, seeing the island as part of its territory awaiting reunification, and often curtails Taiwan’s involvement in international agreements. The two split in 1949 at the end of the Chinese Civil War.
not a member of the United Nations, World Bank or International Monetary Fund.
But it has joined some international organizations under different names. The International Olympic Committee refers to it as “Chinese Taipei,” and it is known as the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu at the World Trade Organization.
As the deadline to apply to become one of the US$50 billion bank’s founding members approached on Tuesday more than 40 countries around the world had sought to do so, including the UK, Germany, France and Italy, despite skepticism about the AIIB in Washington and Tokyo.
Last week Beijing’s vice finance minister Shi Yaobin said it “welcomes all countries” to join the bank, which it has touted as a tool for financing regional development alongside other lenders such as the U.S.-led World Bank and the Japan-led Asian Development Bank.
Premier Mao Chi-kuo ( ), left, speaks during an interpellation session at the Legislative Yuan, yesterday. Mao said yesterday that should Taiwan apply to join the Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in the future, it should be striving to receive equal treatment and to be respected as a country.