Next week’s semi-annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank will be unlike any other.
For the first time, the US truly will be on on the defensive, marginalized within institutions that it designed in its own image. For when officials gather in Washington, everyone will be talking about China and its Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), the vehicle within which the world has piled to escape from the US’s grip on international economic affairs.
“AIIB, dismissed just a few months ago by western countries as another flamboyant plan by China, is now clearly accepted as a tangible game-changing development in the multilateral financial architecture,” says Akshay Mathur, head of research at Gateway House, a think tank that focuses on international affairs and economics in Mumbai.
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