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Asian Development Bank

Asian Development Bank
ADB logo
Motto Fighting poverty in Asia and the Pacific
Formation 19 December 1966
Type Regional organization
Legal status Treaty
Purpose Crediting
Headquarters Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines
Region served
67 countries
Takehiko Nakao
Main organ
Board of Directors[1]
Asian Development Bank member states
  Outside regions
  Asia-Pacific region

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is a regional development bank established on 22 August 1966 which is headquartered in Metro Manila, Philippines, to facilitate economic development in Asia.[3] The bank admits the members of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP, formerly the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East or ECAFE) and non-regional developed countries.[3] From 31 members at its establishment, ADB now has 67 members, of which 48 are from within Asia and the Pacific and 19 outside. The ADB was modeled closely on the World Bank, and has a similar weighted voting system where votes are distributed in proportion with members' capital subscriptions. Since 2014, ADB releases annual report of Creative Productivity Index and comparatively includes Finland and United States for the list of Asia-Pacific members.[4][5]

At the end of 2013, [6]


  • Organization 1
    • List of presidents 1.1
  • History 2
    • 1962–1972 2.1
    • 1972–1986 2.2
    • Since 1986 2.3
  • Lending 3
  • Notable projects and technical assistance 4
  • Effectiveness 5
  • Criticism 6
  • United Nations Development Business 7
  • Strategy 2020 8
  • List of 20 Largest Countries and Regions by Subscribed Capital and Voting Power 9
  • Members 10
  • See also 11
  • References 12
  • External links 13


ADB Headquarters in Mandaluyong City, Philippines

The highest policy-making body of the bank is the Board of Governors, composed of one representative from each member state. The Board of Governors, in turn, elect among themselves the twelve members of the Board and their deputy. Eight of the twelve members come from regional (Asia-Pacific) members while the others come from non-regional members.

The Board of Governors also elect the bank's president, who is the chairperson of the Board of Directors and manages ADB. The president has a term of office lasting five years, and may be reelected. Traditionally, and because Japan is one of the largest shareholders of the bank, the president has always been Japanese.

The most recent president was Takehiko Nakao, who succeeded Haruhiko Kuroda in 2013.[7]

The headquarters of the bank is at 6 ADB Avenue, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines,[8][9] and it has representative offices around the world. The bank employs 3,051 people, of which 1,463 (48%) are from the Philippines.[2]

List of presidents

Name Dates Nationality
Takeshi Watanabe 1966–1972  Japan
Shiro Inoue 1972–1976  Japan
Taroichi Yoshida 1976–1981  Japan
Masao Fujioka 1981–1989  Japan
Kimimasa Tarumizu 1989–1993  Japan
Mitsuo Sato 1993–1999  Japan
Tadao Chino 1999–2005  Japan
Haruhiko Kuroda 2005–2013  Japan
Takehiko Nakao 2013–  Japan



The concept of a regional bank was formally mooted at a trade conference organized by the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East (ECAFE) in 1963 by a young Thai banker, Paul Sithi-Amnuai, for developing intra-regional trade. (ESCAP, United Nations Publication March 2007, "The first parliament of Asia" pp. 65) Once the ADB was founded in 1966, Japan took a prominent position in the bank; it received the presidency and some other crucial "reserve positions" such as the director of the administration department. By the end of 1972, Japan contributed $173.7 million (22.6% of the total) to the ordinary capital resources and $122.6 million (59.6% of the total) to the special funds. In contrast, the United States contributed only $1.25 million for the special fund.[3]

The ADB served Japan's economic interests because its loans went largely to Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, South Korea and the Philippines, the countries with which Japan had crucial trading ties; these nations accounted for 78.48% of the total ADB loans between 1967 and 1972. Moreover, Japan received tangible benefits, 41.67% of the total procurements between 1967 and 1976. Japan tied its special funds contributions to its preferred sectors and regions and procurements of its goods and services, as reflected in its $100 million donation for the Agricultural Special Fund in April 1968.[3]

Takeshi Watanabe served as the first ADB president from 1966 to 1972.


Japan's share of cumulative contributions increased from 30.4% in 1972 to 35.5% in 1981 and 41.9% in 1986. In addition, Japan was a crucial source of ADB borrowing, 29.4% (out of $6,729.1 million) in 1973–86, compared to 45.1% from Europe and 12.9% from the United States. Japanese presidents Inoue Shiro (1972–76) and Yoshida Taroichi (1976–81) took the spotlight. Fujioka Masao, the fourth president (1981–90), adopted an assertive leadership style. He announced an ambitious plan to expand the ADB into a high-impact development agency. His plan and banking philosophy led to increasing friction with the U.S. directors, with open criticism from the Americans at the 1985 annual meeting.[3]

During this period there was a strong parallel institutional tie between the ADB and the Japanese Ministry of Finance, particularly the International Finance Bureau (IFB).

Since 1986

Japan's share of cumulative contributions increased from 41.9% in 1986 to 50.0% in 1993. In addition, Japan has been a crucial lender to the ADB, 30.4% of the total in 1987–93, compared to 39.8% from Europe and 11.7% from the United States. However, different from the previous period, Japan has become more assertive since the mid-1980s. Japan's plan was to use the ADB as a conduit for recycling its huge surplus capital and a "catalyst" for attracting private Japanese capital to the region. After the 1985 Plaza Accord, Japanese manufacturers were pushed by high yen to move to Southeast Asia. The ADB played a role in channeling Japanese private capital to Asia by improving local infrastructure.[3] The ADB also committed itself to increasing loans for social issues such as education, health and population, urban development and environment, to 40% of its total loans from around 30% at the time.[3]


The ADB offers "hard" loans from ordinary capital resources (OCR) on commercial terms, and the Asian Development Fund (ADF) affiliated with the ADB extends "soft" loans from special fund resources with concessional conditions. For OCR, members subscribe capital, including paid-in and callable elements, a 50% paid-in ratio for the initial subscription, 5% for the Third General Capital Increase (GCI) in 1983 and 2% for the Fourth General Capital Increase in 1994. The ADB borrows from international capital markets with its capital as guarantee.[3]

In 2009, ADB obtained member-contributions for its Fifth General Capital Increase of 200%, in response to a call by G20 leaders to increase resources of multilateral development banks so as to support growth in developing countries amid the global financial crisis. For 2010 and 2011, a 200% GCI allows lending of $12.5 billion to 13 billion in 2010 and about $11 billion in 2011.[10] With this increase, the bank's capital base tripled from $55 billion to $165 billion.[11]

Notable projects and technical assistance

  • Afghan Diaspora Project
  • Funding Utah State University led projects to bring labor skills in Thailand
  • Earthquake and Tsunami Emergency Support Project in Indonesia
  • Greater Mekong Subregional Program[12]
  • ROC Ping Hu Offshore Oil and Gas Development
  • Strategic Private Sector Partnerships for Urban Poverty Reduction in the Philippines
  • Trans-Afghanistan Gas Pipeline Feasibility Assessment
  • Loan of $1.2 billion to bail it out of an impending economic crisis in Pakistan and ongoing funding for the countries growing energy needs, specifically Hydro-power projects
  • Micro finance support for private enterprises, in conjunction with governments, including Pakistan and India.
  • The Yichang-Wanzhou Railway project in the mountainous area of western Hubei Province and north-eastern Chongqing Municipality, China. (A US $500 million loan, approved in 2003.)[13]
  • Ulaanbaatar Airport and National Air Navigation Development Projects: Chinggis Khaan International Airport[14]
  • Colombo Harbour Expansion Project[15]
  • Asia Climate Partners, a joint venture between ADB, ORIX Corporation, and Robeco Institutional Asset Management, that funds green-energy projects.[16]


Given ADB's annual lending volume, the return on investment in lesson-learning for operational and developmental impact is high, and maximizing it is a legitimate concern. All projects funded by ADB are evaluated to find out what results are being achieved, what improvements should be considered, and what is being learned.

There are two types of evaluation: independent and self-evaluation. Self-evaluation is conducted by the units responsible for designing and implementing country strategies, programs, projects, or technical assistance activities. It comprises several instruments, including project/program performance reports, midterm review reports, technical assistance or project/program completion reports, and country portfolio reviews. All projects are self-evaluated by the relevant units in a project completion report. ADB’s project completion reports are publicly disclosed on ADB’s website. Client governments are required to prepare their own project completion reports.

Independent evaluation is a foundation block of organizational learning: It is essential to transfer increased amounts of relevant and high-quality knowledge from experience into the hands of policy makers, designers, and implementers. ADB’s Independent Evaluation Department (IED)[17] conducts systematic and impartial assessment of policies, strategies, country programs, and projects, including their design, implementation, results, and associated business processes to determine their relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, and sustainability following prescribed methods and guidelines.[18] It also validates self-evaluations. By this process of evaluation, ADB demonstrates three elements of good governance: accountability, by assessing the effectiveness of ADB's operations; transparency, by independently reviewing operations and publicly reporting findings and recommendations; and improved performance, by helping ADB and its clients learn from experience to enhance ongoing and future operations.

Operations evaluation has changed from the beginnings of evaluation in ADB in 1978. Initially, the focus was on assessing after completion the extent to which projects had achieved their expected economic and social benefits. Operations evaluation now shapes decision making throughout the project cycle and in ADB as a whole. Since the establishment of its independence in 2004, IED reports directly to ADB’s Board of Directors through the Board's Development Effectiveness Committee. Behavioral autonomy, avoidance of conflicts of interest, insulation from external influence, and organizational independence have made evaluation a dedicated tool—governed by the principles of usefulness, credibility, transparency, and independence—for greater accountability and making development assistance work better. Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank presents a perspective of evaluation in ADB from the beginnings and looks to a future in which knowledge management plays an increasingly important role.[19]

In recent years, there has been a major shift in the nature of IED's work program from a dominance of evaluations of individual projects to one focusing on broader and more strategic studies. To select priority topics for evaluation studies, IED seeks input from the Development Effectiveness Committee, ADB Management, and the heads of ADB departments and offices. The current thrusts are to improve the quality of evaluations by using more robust methodologies; give priority to country/sector assistance program evaluations; increase the number of joint evaluations; validate self-evaluations to shorten the learning cycle; conduct more rigorous impact evaluations; develop evaluation capacity, both in ADB and in DMCs; promote portfolio performance; evaluate business processes; and disseminate findings and recommendations and ensure their use. IED's work program has also been reinterpreted to emphasize organizational learning in a more clearly defined results architecture and results framework. It entails conducting and disseminating strategic evaluations (in consultation with stakeholders),[20] harmonizing performance indicators and evaluation methodologies, and developing capacity in evaluation and evaluative thinking.[21] All evaluation studies are publicly disclosed on IED's website (some evaluations of private-sector operations are redacted to protect commercially confidential information).[22] IED's evaluation resources are displayed by resource type, topic, region and country, and date.[23] Learnings are also gathered in an online Evaluation Information System offering a database of lessons, recommendations, and ADB Management responses to these.[24] Details of ongoing evaluations and updates on their progress are made public too.[25]

Beginning 2006, acting within the knowledge management framework of ADB, IED has applied knowledge management to lesson learning, using knowledge performance metrics.

Learning Lessons in ADB sets the strategic framework for knowledge management in operations evaluation.[26] Improvements have been made that hold promise not only in IED but, more importantly, vis-à-vis its interfaces with other departments and offices in ADB, developing member countries, and the international evaluation community. In the medium term, IED will continue to improve the organizational culture, management system, business processes, information technology solutions, community of practice, and external relations and networking for lesson learning. Among the new knowledge products and services developed, Learning Curves are brief references designed to feed findings and recommendations from evaluation to a broader range of clients[27] Evaluation News report on events in monitoring and evaluation. Evaluation Presentations offer short photographic or PowerPoint displays on evaluation topics. Auditing the Lessons Architecture highlights the contribution that knowledge audits can make to organizational learning and health.[28]

Of the 1,106 ADB-funded projects evaluated and rated as of December 2007, 65% were assessed as successful, 27% partly successful, and 8% as unsuccessful.


Since the ADB's early days, critics have charged that the two major donors, Japan and the United States, have had extensive influence over lending, policy and staffing decisions.[29]

Oxfam Australia has criticized the Asian Development Bank of insensitivity to local communities. "Operating at a global and international level, these banks can undermine people's human rights through projects that have detrimental outcomes for poor and marginalized communities."[30] The bank also received criticism from the United Nations Environmental Program, stating in a report that "much of the growth has bypassed more than 70 percent of its rural population, many of whom are directly dependent on natural resources for livelihoods and incomes."[31]

There had been criticism that ADB's large scale projects cause social and environmental damage due to lack of oversight. One of the most controversial ADB-related projects is Thailand's Mae Moh coal-fired power station. Environmental and human rights activists say ADB's environmental safeguards policy as well as policies for indigenous peoples and involuntary resettlement, while usually up to international standards on paper, are often ignored in practice, are too vague or weak to be effective, or are simply not enforced by bank officials.[32][33]

The bank has been criticized over its role and relevance in the food crisis.The ADB has been accused by civil society of ignoring warnings leading up the crisis and also contributing to it by pushing loan conditions that many say unfairly pressure governments to deregulate and privatize agriculture, leading to problems such as the rice supply shortage in Southeast Asia.[34]

The bank has also been criticized by Vietnam War veterans for funding projects in Laos, because of the United States' 15% stake in the bank, underwritten by taxes.[35] Laos became a communist country after the U.S. withdrew from Vietnam, and the Laotian Civil War was won by the Pathet Lao, which is widely understood to have been supported by the North Vietnamese Army.

In 2009, the bank endorsed a $2.9 billion funding strategy for proposed projects in India. The projects in this strategy were only indicative and still needed to be further approved by the bank's board of directors; however, PRC Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang claimed, "The Asian Development Bank, regardless of the major concerns of China, approved the India Country Partnership strategy which involves the territorial dispute between China and India. China expresses its strong dissatisfaction over this.... The bank's move not only seriously tarnishes its own name, but also undermines the interests of its members."[36]

United Nations Development Business

The United Nations launched Development Business in 1978 with the support of the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, and many other major development banks from around the world. Today, Development Business is the primary publication for all major multilateral development banks, United Nations agencies, and several national governments, many of whom have made the publication of their tenders and contracts in Development Business a mandatory requirement.[37]

Strategy 2020

Strategy 2020 is The Long-Term Strategic Framework of the Asian Development Bank and wide strategic framework to guide all its operations to 2020.

List of 20 Largest Countries and Regions by Subscribed Capital and Voting Power

The following table are amounts for 20 largest countries by subscribed capital and voting power at the Asian Development Bank as of December 2014.[38]

The 20 Largest Countries by Subscribed Capital and Voting Power at the Asian Development Bank
Rank Country Subscribed Capital
(% of Total)
Rank Country Voting Power
(% of Total)
World 100.000 World 100.000
1  Japan 15.677  European Union 15.724
2  United States 15.567 1  Japan 12.840
 European Union 14.429 2  United States 12.752
3  China 6.473 3  China 5.477
4  India 6.359 4  India 5.386
5  Australia 5.812 5  Australia 4.948
6  Canada 5.254 6  Canada 4.502
7  Indonesia 5.131 7  Indonesia 4.404
8  South Korea 5.060 8  South Korea 4.347
9  Germany 4.345 9  Germany 3.775
10  Malaysia 2.735 10  Malaysia 2.487
11  Philippines 2.393 11  Philippines 2.213
12  France 2.338 12  France 2.169
13  Pakistan 2.188 13  Pakistan 2.049
14  United Kingdom 2.051 14  United Kingdom 1.940
15  Italy 1.815 15  Italy 1.751
16  New Zealand 1.543 16  New Zealand 1.533
17  Thailand 1.368 17  Thailand 1.393
18  Taiwan 1.094 18  Taiwan 1.174
19  Netherlands 1.030 19  Netherlands 1.123
20  Bangladesh 1.026 20  Bangladesh 1.119


Asian Development Bank - Developing Member Countries (DMC) graduation stages[39]
  Outside regions
  Asia-Pacific region developed members
  DMC graduated from assistance, Group-D
  Ordinary Capital Resources (OCR) financing, Group-C
  OCR and ADF blended financing, Group-B
  Asian Development Fund (ADF) financing, Group-A

ADB has 67 members (as of 2 February 2007): 48 members from the Asian and Pacific Region, 19 members from Other Regions.[6] Notable non-members are Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, North Korea, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Names are as recognized by ADB.
The year after a member's name indicates the year of membership. At the time a country ceases to be a member, the Bank shall arrange for the repurchase of such country's shares by the Bank as a part of the settlement of accounts with such country in accordance with the provisions of paragraphs 3 and 4 of Article 43.[40]

Country Date of Accession
 Afghanistan 1966
 Australia 1966
 Cambodia 1966
 India 1966
 Indonesia 1966
 Japan 1966
 Korea, Republic of 1966
 Lao People's Democratic Republic[41] 1966
 Malaysia 1966
   Nepal 1966
 New Zealand 1966
 Pakistan 1966
 Philippines 1966
 Samoa 1966
 Singapore 1966
 Sri Lanka 1966
 Taipei,China[42][43] 1966
 Thailand 1966
 Viet Nam, Socialist Republic of[44] 1966
 Hong Kong, China[45] 1969
 Fiji 1970
 Papua New Guinea 1971
 Tonga 1972
 Bangladesh 1973
 Burma 1973
 Solomon Islands 1973
 Kiribati 1974
 Cook Islands 1976
 Maldives 1978
 Vanuatu 1981
 Bhutan 1982
 China, People's Republic of 1986
 Marshall Islands 1990
 Micronesia, Federated States of 1990
 Mongolia 1991
 Nauru 1991
 Tuvalu 1993
 Kazakhstan 1994
 Kyrgyz Republic 1994
 Uzbekistan 1995
 Tajikistan 1998
 Azerbaijan 1999
 Turkmenistan 2000
 Timor-Leste 2002
 Palau 2003
 Armenia 2005
 Brunei Darussalam 2006
 Georgia 2007
Country Date of Accession
 Austria 1966
 Belgium 1966
 Canada 1966
 Denmark 1966
 Finland 1966
 Germany[46] 1966
 Italy 1966
 Netherlands 1966
 Norway 1966
 Sweden 1966
 United Kingdom 1966
 United States 1966
  Switzerland 1967
 France 1970
 Spain 1986
 Turkey 1991
 Portugal 2002
 Luxembourg 2003
 Ireland 2006

See also


  1. ^ About: Management,
  2. ^ a b ADB Annual Report 2013 - Management and Staff Representation
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h
  4. ^
  5. ^ http://www.adb.orgs/default/files/publication/59586/creative-productivity-index_0.pdf
  6. ^ a b Members, Capital Stock, and Voting Power (December 2013)
  7. ^ New ADB President Takehiko Nakao Assumes Office
  8. ^ "Contacts." (Archive) Asian Development Bank. Retrieved on April 21, 2015. "6 ADB Avenue, Mandaluyong City 1550, Philippines"
  9. ^ "Contacts: How to Visit ADB." (Archive) Asian Development Bank. Retrieved on April 21, 2015.
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ LOAN: PRC 35339-01. China, People's Rep. of; Yichang-Wanzhou Railway Project (ADB site)
  14. ^ Ulaanbaatar airport projects documents,
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ Evaluation,
  18. ^ Methods and Guidelines -
  19. ^ Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank -
  20. ^ Resources - Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank
  21. ^ Evaluation Capacity Development in ADB's Developing Member Countries
  22. ^ Independent Evaluation at the Asian Development Bank -
  23. ^ Evaluation Reports -
  24. ^ ADB Evaluation Information System
  25. ^ Ongoing Evaluations of ADB Policies & Operation in Asia & the Pacific -
  26. ^ Learning Lessons in ADB: Strategic Framework, 2007-2009 -
  27. ^ Learning Curves -
  28. ^ Auditing the Lessons Architecture -
  29. ^
  30. ^ Oxfam Australia. "The Mekong and Asian Development Bank
  31. ^ IPS. "UNEP faults Asian development project."
  32. ^ " LOCAL CONCERNS IGNORED Large-scale ADB projects draw criticism"
  33. ^ NGO criticises ADB and questions its ability to reduce poverty
  34. ^ "ADB to meet amid food crisis, growing poverty"
  35. ^
  36. ^
  37. ^ United Nations Development Business' website
  38. ^ Members, Capital Stock, and Voting Power (December 2014)
  39. ^ ADB Graduation policy
  40. ^
  41. ^ Joined as  Kingdom of Laos, succeeded by Lao PDR in 1975
  42. ^ Taipei,China's Fact Sheet on the ADB website
  43. ^ Joined as  China, Republic of representing not only Taiwan Area, but also nominally Mainland China until 1986. However, its share of Bank capital was based on the size of Taiwan's capital, unlike the World Bank and IMF where the government in Taiwan had had a share. The representation was succeeded by  People's Republic of China in 1986. However, the ROC was allowed to retain its membership, but under the name of Taipei,China (space deliberately omitted after the comma) — a name it protests. Uniquely, this allows both sides of the Taiwan Straits to be represented at the institution.
  44. ^ Formerly  Viet Nam, Republic of until 1975
  45. ^ Joined as "Hong Kong", not "Hong Kong, China"
  46. ^ Founding member; joined as West Germany.

External links

  • Bank Information Center
  • The ADB website
  • ADB Institute
  • "Inequality Worsens across Asia", Dollars & Sense magazine, November/December 2007. Article discussing recent reports from the ADB.
  • "The right business environment" Youth unemployment in Asia. An interview with Jesus Felipe, advisor in the Economics and Research Department of ADB.
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