World powers view the proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank as a threat and direct challenge to long standing global development banks IMF, World Bank, and Asian Development Bank. Despite opposition and warning to other nations from US, Japan, Canada, and France, over 40 countries have committed to joining the AIIB. The AIIB’s capitalization is projected to reach $100 million, with $50 million from China. While President Obama and other nations worry that the AIIB is a Chinese attempt at world domination, others conclude that this multilateral initiative is actually a step backward from China’s historical bilateral initiatives in the developing world.
While China’s direct investment in developing countries brought a great deal of newfound wealth and prosperity to these countries, some argued that this investment was simply a form of imperialism. For example, China allocated funds to countries in Africa and southeast Asia under the condition that these countries use Chinese contractors and buy Chinese made goods. With multilateral initiatives such as the AIIB, China’s control over the bank is diluted with every additional contribution from other countries. In reality, China deliberately forgoes leverage in the institution of the AIIB in lieu of continued aggressive, bilateral initiatives.