Interview: Uzbek minister hails AIIB's annual meeting in Egypt as "important, fruitful"

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- Laziz Kudratov, the governor of Uzbekistan at the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), hailed Tuesday the bank's eighth annual meeting as "important and fruitful."

Kudratov, also Uzbek minister of investment, industry, and trade, made the remarks in an interview with Xinhua on the sidelines of the AIIB's two-day annual meeting that concluded Tuesday in Egypt's Red Sea resort city of Sharm El-Sheikh.

He highlighted the Climate Action Plan (CAP) as a significant outcome of this year's annual meeting, saying new mechanisms and instruments included in the plan are "crucial for supporting efforts to preserve the environment and to tackle the climate challenges."

On Monday, the opening day of its annual meeting, the AIIB launched the CAP to guide the institution's climate ambition from 2024 to 2030.

Seen as "a milestone" in the bank's commitment to combatting climate change, the CAP brings together the principles governing the bank's climate financing while identifying crucial action areas that will steer its investments in support of its members, the AIIB said in a statement.

Speaking to Xinhua, Kudratov also listed green development and climate change among issues likely to be focused on at the next annual meeting of the bank, which is scheduled to be held by his country.

"For the agenda of the next meeting, I believe it will be discussed with the members of AIIB, but our proposal and vision would include topics of green development and climate change issues," said Kudratov.

"Another topic that will be of interest to us is connectivity and transportation because for our region, Central Asia, which is landlocked, developing efficient transport corridors is of great importance," he added.

Issues related to supporting digital transformation, entrepreneurship and startups could also be submitted for discussion during the next annual meeting, the minister said.

The AIIB is a multilateral development bank whose primary mission is to finance infrastructure projects that prioritize sustainability. It began operations in Beijing in January 2016 and has since grown to 109 approved members worldwide, with three new members approved at this year's annual meeting.

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