ADB assists member countries in developing Asia to building transport infrastructure and services which contribute towards low-carbon, safe, accessible, and affordable transport systems.
ADB will continue operations where it already has a track record of effective operations. This includes construction and rehabilitation of roads, including rural roads, as well as development of railway systems which will constitute the majority of ADB transport operations during the initial years of the STI operational plan and will still account for a substantial portion in 2020. For such operations, the STI will focus on mainstreaming sustainable transport considerations into ADB’s approach.
While the share of road projects is going down, the share of railway projects is increasing.
Transport improvements have not kept pace with the growth in demand and transport remains a critical development bottleneck, according to ADBI. In the next decade, the countries of Asia and the Pacific will need to invest $2.5 trillion for transport alone. In the past decade, ADB assisted some DMCs with policy, legal, regulatory, and institutional arrangements to support increased private sector participation in transport. Through its public sector operations it helped governments introduce additional forms of private participation, such as build–operate–transfer (BOT) concessions for toll roads and bridges, public transport service concessions, and performance and area-based operation and maintenance contracts. Overall, ADB's direct private sector lending for transport has been very modest. This reflects a series of problems and challenges, some concerning the wider environment for transport public–private partnerships (PPPs) in DMCs, and others concerning limitations in ADB's approach to supporting transport PPPs.