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Bank association launched for Northeast Asia region

By He Na in Yanji, Jilin ( chinadaily.com.cn )

A multilateral export-import banks association that aims to serve economic needs and relieve capital shortage in Northeast Asia, especially the Greater Tumen Initiative, was officially launched on Thursday in the Yanbian Korea autonomous prefecture in Jilin province.

The NEA EXIM Banks Association was established by export-import or equivalent development banks of China, Mongolia, Russia and the Republic of Korea, four member countries of the GTI, with communication and administrative support from the GTI Secretariat.

"One of its main functions is to encourage the private sector to consolidate resources for infrastructure and development projects," said Wang Weina, director of the GTI Secretariat. "We hope that the current stage of partnership among GTI member countries and other relevant international agencies and financial institutions may be further enhanced through more creative and collaborative financial channels."

Wang Shouwen, China's assistant minister of commerce, said at the inaugural meeting: "The infrastructure of the GTI and the entire NEA is very poor and capital shortage has long greatly restrained the development of the GTI. Infrastructure construction and attracting investment are the top priorities of its agenda, and the association will open a new vista to the GTI and is being established right in time."

"I suggest all the member governments improve their investment mechanisms and create a fair, transparent and highly efficient system to attract more investors," he said.

The inaugural meeting was the result of many multilateral discussions and two working level meetings since a Memorandum of Understanding for the association was signed in 2012.