Hong Kong will take a bigger role in the internationalisation of the yuan and multi-billion fund raising when the city becomes a member of the Beijing-led AIIB this year, its Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury Chan Ka-keung told the South China Morning Post this week. He also revealed that the city’s Financial Secretary John Tsang Chun-wah had asked the Hong Kong Monetary Authority — the city’s central bank — to establish an office to arrange various types of funding for the AIIB.
“[Membership of the AIIB] will be an important step for Hong Kong, allowing it to take a leading role as the international fund-raising centre for the many projects in the One Belt, One Road policy that need to be financed by the AIIB,” Chan said. “The financial sector and professionals such as the lawyers and accountants, as well as traders or other companies will all benefit from these developments.”
His remarks follow the reent suggestion from AIIB President Jin Liqun that Hong Kong could join the bank as a sub-sovereign member by the end of the year. “We are working on accepting new members. I think the new-member problem will be solved before the end of this year,” Jin told journalists at last month’s Bao Forum for Asia in China’s Hainan province. “As an international financial centre, we believe Hong Kong has a role to play to facilitate financing the AIIB, in areas such as bond issues and the arrangement of currency swaps…..We are very happy to be able to work with Hong Kong.”