Bangladesh has finally become a member of the New Development Bank (NDB), which was launched in 2015 by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, collectively known as Brics, according to a statement of NDB.
The NDB aimed to be an alternative to the US-dominated World Bank and International Monetary Fund. In December 2020, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited Bangladesh to join the NDB. Its high commission in Dhaka wrote twice, in August and November 2020, offering Bangladesh to be a member of the NDB.
On February 2, Dhaka expressed its interest to join the NDB at a virtual meeting with NDB President Marcos Troyjo.
A senior official of the Economic Relations Division (ERD) told The Daily Star that they would send an acceptance letter to Brazil after taking prior permission from the prime minister as soon as possible.
He said now they would start paying membership and avail the country’s share of the bank while a new window would be opened for accessing loans.
The NDB’s board of governors authorised the bank to conduct formal negotiations with prospective members in late 2020.
The bank says its purpose was to mobilise resources for infrastructure and sustainable development projects in Brics, and other emerging economies and developing countries to complement existing efforts of multilateral and regional financial institutions for global growth and development.
After a round of successful negotiations, the NDB is extending its global outreach, with the announcement of Bangladesh, the UAE and Uruguay becoming the first ones to become members.
“We are delighted to welcome Bangladesh, one of the world’s fastest growing economies, into the NDB. Bangladesh joining us in the year it celebrates the 50th anniversary of its independence is an important milestone,” said Troyjo in a statement yesterday.
“Bangladesh’s membership in the NDB has paved the way for a new partnership at a momentous time of the 50th anniversary of our independence,” said Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal.
“Membership in the NDB is an important step forward in meeting the development vision of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina,” he said.
Bangladesh looks forward to working closely with the NDB to build together a prosperous and equitable world for the next generation as dreamt by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, he said.
Through the NDB, Bangladesh will have a new platform to foster cooperation in infrastructure and sustainable development with Brics and upcoming new members.
Membership with the NDB becomes effective once the admitted country completes its domestic processes and deposits the instrument of accession.
Since its establishment, the NDB has approved about 80 projects in all of its member countries, totalling a portfolio of $30 billion.
Projects in areas such as transport, water and sanitation, clean energy, digital infrastructure, social infrastructure and urban development are within the scope of the bank.
The NDB’s membership expansion is in line with the bank’s strategy to become the premier development institution for emerging market economies.
It has an authorised capital of $100 billion, which is open for subscription by members of the United Nations.
-With The Daily Star input