Joining the AIIB would benefit the American people

By Caleb T. Maupin
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, May 23, 2018
Adjust font size:

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank [Photo/AIIB]

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) currently has 64 member states, as well as 22 prospective member states. The United States is not currently part of this vitally important international financial institution, despite the fact that the work of the AIIB affects issues that are deeply important to many Americans, and the fact that China has extended numerous invitations.

Meanwhile, Argentina is facing a financial crisis and the collapse of its currency. After a recent phone call with Trump, Argentine President Mauricio Macri announced that his country will rejoin the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and will receive emergency funds from the institution.

Following this announcement, protests rocked Argentina. Many were outraged and recalled the financial crisis of 2001 when Argentina's economy crashed, resulting in political chaos and mass unrest. Argentina's public blamed the policies of the IMF for the crisis and subsequently embraced the left-wing Peronist leadership of Cristina Kirschner, as a mark of their rejection of the IMF and the United States.

Now, with the IMF directing policy once again, Argentina is expected to lay off more government employees and further cut pensions. The Macri presidency is already associated with austerity, and now this trend can be expected to escalate under the IMF's direction.

By contrast, the AIIB operates in a manner completely different from the IMF. Unlike the IMF, which is a bastion of neoliberalism and market extremism, the AIIB's mode of operation is rooted in the theories of Deng Xiaoping and other economists who enabled China to experience an unprecedented amount of rapid growth from 1978 to the present day.

Rather than mandating that developing countries slash their public budgets in order to create more of a "business-friendly atmosphere," the AIIB tends to do the opposite by granting loans to build roads, railways, airports, hospitals, power plants, and other infrastructure to promote economic growth. The AIIB works to put China's global vision for the Belt and Road Initiative into practice.

Many Americans who voted for Trump did so because of his promise to build a wall and stop the surge of immigration across the Mexican border. If Mexico and other countries south of the United States had a stable infrastructure and growing domestic economy, it is likely that the wave of immigrants crossing the border each day would drastically decrease.

Many Americans also worry about terrorism. The AIIB is currently working to stabilize Central Asia and the Middle East with development projects, arguing that the way to weaken terrorist groups and drug cartels is to provide economic opportunity.

China is currently working with Iran on a "trade and transport" plan to stabilize Afghanistan. The hope is that providing port access to this landlocked country, which has been a bastion of heroin dealers and terrorist organizations since the 2001 NATO-led invasion, will allow the economy to stabilize. If railways could connect Afghanistan to the ocean, the next step would be growth in manufacturing and exports, making it more feasible for Afghanistan to develop a stable, above-ground trade economy .

In recent U.S. elections, every major candidate has promised to address the nation's crumbling domestic infrastructure. However, problems continue across the country as water continues to be improperly purified, roads are crumbling, and an overall state of decay persists.

If the U.S. were to join the AIIB, it would be directly linked to some of the world's most experienced infrastructure-building experts and advisers. American politicians who want to "fix up" the country could be part of a global community doing the same work while eradicating poverty around the globe.

In this context, it is only logical for the U.S. to accept China's invitation and join the AIIB. Doing so would be beneficial, not just to developing countries, but to the United States itself as well.

Caleb Maupin is a journalist and political analyst who resides in New York City focusing on U.S. foreign policy and the global system of monopoly capitalism and imperialism.

Opinion articles reflect the views of their authors only, not necessarily those of

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from