JEJU ISLAND, South Korea, June 16 (Xinhua) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Friday welcomed the second annual meeting of the China-initiated Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) in his congratulatory address.
The AIIB's second annual meeting of the board of governors kicked off Friday at the International Convention Center in South Korea's southern resort island of Jeju. The first meeting was held in Beijing last year.
Moon, who took office on May 10, said in his address that he was glad to see his country co-host the meaningful event, the first AIIB annual meeting outside the Beijing headquarters, and that it was also meaningful to him as it was his first participation in an international function since his inauguration.
South Korea became a venue for the first meeting outside China for the AIIB's board of governors, the bank's key decision-making body.
Officially launched in January 2016, the Beijing-based AIIB is a multilateral development bank initiated by China and supported by a wide range of countries and regions, which will provide financing for infrastructure improvement in Asia.
Moon expressed his high anticipation toward the AIIB, which connects people and regions and plays a greater role in opening a better future beyond the present, saying the sustainable infrastructure was still important to eradicate poverty and expand economic development especially for developing countries in Asia.
The South Korean leader said the AIIB produced many achievements in the short period of one and a half years to make great contributions to an expanded infrastructure of developing countries.
Moon expressed his gratitude to the Chinese government initiating the AIIB and to the AIIB chief for their continued efforts at the stable start of the 18-month-old multilateral financial institution.
This year's annual meeting brought together about 2,000 participants, including delegations of both 57 founding members and 20 new members, international organizations and academia as well as businessmen, financiers and journalists.
The attendees included over 20 finance ministers of the 77 approved AIIB members such as Australia, China, Georgia, India, Indonesia and Laos, according to South Korea's finance ministry.
The second meeting was held under the theme of "Sustainable Infrastructure," seeking strategic directions of the international infrastructure bank and making major decisions on the bank's management.
Along with the official sessions, a variety of side events were scheduled such as seminars on infrastructure and the one-on-one business meetings.
Several bilateral meetings between chief delegates will be held on the sidelines of the official sessions.