Masatsugu Asakawa to Stand for Reelection as ADB President

Manila: Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa today expressed his intention to stand for reelection as President for the 5-year term after his current term ends on 23 November 2021. ADB Presidents are nominated from ADB’s regional members for a 5-year term and elected by the ADB Board of Governors.

“ADB has worked closely with our developing member countries (DMCs) throughout the global pandemic to design and implement effective solutions for Asia and the Pacific in a timely and tailored manner. We have also continued efforts to address critical long-term development agendas such as gender, climate change, and private sector development, as directed by our Strategy 2030,” Mr. Asakawa said. “If reelected, I commit to strengthening ADB’s focus on supporting DMCs’ recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, to deepening our partnerships with all ADB members and peer organizations, and to ensuring staff well-being. ADB will make every effort to ensure our DMCs can sustain the impressive gains they have achieved and continue their progress toward a resilient, green, and inclusive future.”

Mr. Asakawa was elected as President by the Board of Governors on 30 November 2019 and assumed office on 17 January 2020 to serve the remaining term of his predecessor, Takehiko Nakao.

Under his leadership, ADB has made significant contributions to the region’s response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and recovery planning. In April 2020, ADB announced a $20 billion comprehensive response package, covering both sovereign and nonsovereign assistance, to help its DMCs mitigate the impacts of the pandemic. In December, ADB launched the $9 billion Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility to provide rapid and equitable support to its DMCs as they procure and deliver effective and safe COVID-19 vaccines. ADB also concluded a successful replenishment of more than $4 billion for its Asian Development Fund and Technical Assistance Special Fund which are providing critical grant resources to help its most vulnerable DMCs overcome the pandemic and address various long-term development goals.

ADB’s total commitments in 2020 reached a record high of $31.6 billion, with just over half supporting operations to respond to the pandemic. The remainder was committed to address long-term development issues such as the gender equality gap, the impacts of climate change, and investments in quality infrastructure. These achievements were supported by record-high cofinancing of $16.4 billion and record-high capital market borrowings of $35.8 billion.

At the institutional level, Mr. Asakawa led ADB staff as they adapted to new work arrangements and continued implementation of the organization’s digital transformation. ADB also launched a new Knowledge Management Action Plan which will enable the development and delivery of the most practical and cutting-edge knowledge solutions to its DMCs, and a culture transformation initiative to empower staff and Management to achieve the goals of Strategy 2030, ADB’s corporate strategy.

ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.