ADB defines corruption as "the abuse of public or private office for personal gain." A more comprehensive definite is as follows:

Corruption involves behavior on the part of officials inthe public and private sectors, in which they improperly and unlawfully enrich themselves and/or those close to them, or induce others to do so, by misusing the position in which they are placed.

At the broadest level, ADB's stance on anticorruption issues is intended to reduce the burden that widespread, systemic corruption exacts upon the governments and economies of the region. More specifically, ADB's approach is centered upon three objectives:

  • supporting competitive markets and efficient, effective, accountable and transparent public administration as part of ADB's broader work on good governance and capacity building;
  • supporting promising anticorruption efforts on a case-by-case basis and improving the quality of our dialogue with developing member countries on a range of governance issues, including corruption; and
  • ensuring that ADB projects and staff adhere to the highest ethical standards.

ADB gives increased emphasis to strengthening key institutions for advancing transparency and accountability in developing member countries. These may include supreme audit agencies, procurement agencies, regulatory agencies, ombudsman offices, and the like.

Where appropriate it also supports regional initiatives and research on advancing accountability and transparency in the Asian and Pacific region through technical assistance grants.