The Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey will be flying to Beijing on Monday to officially join Australia to the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

Australia’s decision to join the mega-bank comes after protracted and intense negotiations. These negotiations focused on the structure, input and responsibilities of members in the $A129.5 billion institution.

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank will rival the US dominated World Bank. It’s charter is to support development throughout the Asian region, with member nations being granted certain privileges in return for their investment.

The new superbank will work with the Asian Development and World Banks (along with a range of other more local banks) to fill an estimated $A10.34 trillion infrastructure gap in Asia over the next decade.

“We are absolutely satisfied,” said Mr Hockey to Sky News, “that the governance arrangement now in place will ensure there is appropriate transparency and accountability in the bank.”

Australia is expected to contribute $930 million.

Mr Hockey said a seat at the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank table is “a significant opportunity for Australia.” Greater infrastructure in the Asian region will facilitate the flow of goods between Australia and our neighbours – increasing the flow of exports and reducing the cost of imports.

56 other countries have also joined the AIIB. However, the United States have resisted all overtures to support the project.

Financial experts believe the formation of the banking giant marks a shift in world power, from the west to the east.

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