TAIPEI (CNA) — The Ministry of Finance (MOF, 財政部) said on March 13 that Taiwan will not apply to host a major meeting of a Central American regional bank next year, as it wishes to abide by the bank’s traditions.

It is customary for a new member of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI) to host the annual meeting and since South Korea is expected to join later this year, it is likely to seek to host the 60th annual board meeting in 2020, the ministry said.

According to MOF, the Republic of China (Taiwan) has been a member to the CABEI since 1992 and hosted the board meeting in 1995.

The MOF’s statement was released in response to a Bloomberg report earlier in the day, which cited unnamed sources as saying that Taiwan was considering the bid.

Taiwan is the largest extra-regional partner of the CABEI, holding a stake of about 10 percent.

Founded in 1960, CABEI currently has 14 members and its purpose is to provide loans for private and government-led development projects in the Central American region.

South Korea is set to become the 15th member state of the multilateral lender after signing a deal with CABEI last December.

By Joseph Yeh