By Jonathan Davies

Australia will join the China-led investment bank as a founding member, contributing AUS$930 million ($718.5m; £455m) over five years.

It joins 50 member countries, including the UK, as part of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and will be the sixth largest stakeholder.

The bank has been tipped as a Chinese rival to the western-led World Bank. The US and Japan have refused to join, and the UK's decision to join the bank sparked criticism from the US.

The US claims the AIIB will be used by China to spread its political influence. The bank, which will be based in Beijing, will help to fund major construction projects in roads, railways, ports and other areas in Asia.

Australian Treasurer Joe Hockey said the decision "comes after extensive discussions between the government, China and other key partners around the world".

"The governance of the AIIB will be based on best practice, ensuring that all members will be directly involved in the direction and decision making of the bank in an open and transparent manner," he said.
orologi replica
réplicas de relojes
replique rolex