BEIJING, March 11 (Xinhua) -- The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has barred nearly 1,000 entities that have been sanctioned by other leading development banks from participating in its projects.
In its anti-corruption effort, the AIIB has voluntarily adopted the list of sanctioned firms and individuals under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions (AMEDD), effective on March 1, 2017, according to the China-initiated multilateral development bank.
With the move, firms and individuals that engage in corrupt, fraudulent or other prohibited practices can be blocked by the AIIB, either permanently or for several years.
"Creating a culture that lives up to our core value to be 'clean' is crucial for the AIIB because we are ultimately the stewards of taxpayers' money from all of our members," said Hamid Sharif, director general of the AIIB's compliance, effectiveness and integrity unit.
The AIIB was established in 2015 and started operation in January 2016. With 57 signatory countries and authorized capital of 100 billion U.S. dollars, it aims to provide financing for infrastructure improvement in Asia as a "lean, clean and green" bank.
The AIIB's institutional arrangements help the bank to "react and deal with any suspicions of corruption or unethical behavior in our projects," said Sharif.
During its first year of operation, the bank approved loans of 1.73 billion U.S. dollars to support nine infrastructure projects in seven countries.
In 2017, the AIIB will focus on three major areas -- sustainable infrastructure, cross-country connectivity and the mobilization of private capital -- according to an earlier statement from the bank.