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The evolution of China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank: from a revisionist to status-seeking agenda

Wilson, J.D. (2017) The evolution of China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank: from a revisionist to status-seeking agenda. International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, In press .

Link to Published Version: https://doi.org/10.1093/irap/lcx015
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Abstract

China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is a controversial addition to both the global and Asian economic architectures. Western critics have alleged it is a vehicle designed to achieve China’s geostrategic goals, while scholars have argued it marks China’s adoption of a ‘revisionist’ foreign policy strategy. This article argues that such interpretations are incorrect, as they fail to account for the evolution of China’s AIIB agenda. To secure a broad membership and international legitimacy for the AIIB, China compromised with partners during governance negotiations in 2015. Western country demands saw several controversial initial proposals dropped, the governance practices of existing multilateral development banks were adopted, and cooperative partnerships were developed with the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. This transition from a revisionist to status-seeking AIIB agenda reveals the flexibility of Chinese economic statecraft, and its willingness to compromise strategic goals to boost the legitimacy of its international leadership claims.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: Asia Research Centre
Publisher: Oxford University Press
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/39061
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