Addressing fragile and conflict-affected situations (FCAS) is essential for a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific. ADB is developing an approach to ensure that our operations address the specific challenges and requirements of FCAS and Small Island Developing States (SIDS). This approach will provide a consistent framework for analysis and contextual knowledge, promote the use of innovative approaches technologies, and deliver integrated solutions by combining expertise across a range of sectors and themes, and through a mix of public and private sector operations.


In the past half century, Asia and the Pacific has experienced unprecedented economic growth, bringing hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.

Yet, in a region that is home to 5 of the world’s most populous countries, but also to some of the smallest nations on earth, this is far from being a universal narrative.

While many of the countries in Asia and the Pacific are now classified as middle-income, others still need help to ensure sustained economic growth, provide jobs for their people, ensure greater access to healthcare and education, provide safety and security, and manage the threats from natural hazards and climate change.

ADB’s vision is for an Asia and Pacific that is prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable. This means that we must make sure no one is left behind.

However, ADB’s own internal analysis shows that our assistance has not performed as effectively in some countries. And every time there is a delay, people are held back without clean water, or access to energy.

As such, ADB is now preparing what we call a “differentiated approach” to fragile and conflict-affected situations (FCAS) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS). We are combining FCAS and SIDS because there is a significant overlap between these two categories.

This means that we need to make sure that our policies, procedures, and processes are appropriate to the specific needs of FCAS and SIDS, and that assistance is designed with the specific context of each country.

For example, we cannot design our projects in FCAS and SIDS the way we do in the large upper middle-income countries of the region. We must make sure that they are designed in a “context specific” manner that takes into consideration the need to enhance governance and ensure that our counterparts have the ability to manage projects effectively, supervise procurement, ensure financial management, and oversee environmental and social safeguards.

How have we gone about this?

We conducted an iterative process of analysis, consultations, integration and adaptation. In our first round of consultations, we held over 40 meetings with more than 200 stakeholders across 23 countries to identify critical issues and discuss effective and implementable solutions.

From a detailed problem analysis, we developed a theory of change to improve the effectiveness of ADB assistance and enhance the development outcomes of the FCAS and SIDS. 

A second round of consultations gives us an opportunity to fine-tune the different sections of the Approach.

To know more, send us an email at [email protected].