The Strategy 2020 has identified nine leading challenges facing Asia; two of them are RCI related. First, while intraregional trade accounts for 56% of the region's total trade, much of this is confined to East Asia, with other subregions South Asia and the Pacific island countries in particular only starting to develop their trade and investment ties with Asia. Second, the region's savings are also not intermediated in the region, limiting the amount of capital invested in long-term projects such as infrastructure. Therefore, more RCI is needed to address these development challenges. By expanding trade and investment, strengthening capital market development and linkages, and investing in transportation and information connectivity, RCI can raise a country's growth potential. It can also reduce development gaps by allowing smaller and low-growth countries to tap regional supply chains and financial markets. Strategy 2020 has also identified RCI as one of its key development agenda.
|Project Name||Asia Regional Integration Center, Phase V|
|Project Type / Modality of Assistance||Technical Assistance
|Source of Funding / Amount||
|Strategic Agendas||Inclusive economic growth
|Drivers of Change||Partnerships
|Sector / Subsector||
Finance - Finance sector development
Industry and trade - Trade and services
Public sector management - Economic affairs management
|Gender Equity and Mainstreaming|
The Strategy 2020 has identified nine leading challenges facing Asia; two of them are RCI related. First, while intraregional trade accounts for 56% of the region's total trade, much of this is confined to East Asia, with other subregions South Asia and the Pacific island countries in particular only starting to develop their trade and investment ties with Asia. Second, the region's savings are also not intermediated in the region, limiting the amount of capital invested in long-term projects such as infrastructure. Therefore, more RCI is needed to address these development challenges. By expanding trade and investment, strengthening capital market development and linkages, and investing in transportation and information connectivity, RCI can raise a country's growth potential. It can also reduce development gaps by allowing smaller and low-growth countries to tap regional supply chains and financial markets. Strategy 2020 has also identified RCI as one of its key development agenda. In turn, it has raised the importance of exploiting the potential benefit of RCI activities for accelerating economic growth, raising productivity and employment, reducing economic disparities, and achieving closer policy coordination and collaboration. ADB continues to support RCI work by providing financial assistance to RCI-related programs and projects, producing and disseminating RCI knowledge products, working with regional and international institutions to foster greater cooperation and consultation, and extending technical assistance to implement RCI programs.
Since 2006, the ADB has financially supported a regional Technical Assistance (TA) for the Asia Regional Integration Center (ARIC) to enhance the capacity of key RCI stakeholders to promote greater regional integration by: (i) providing access to timely and relevant knowledge and information on RCI; (ii) facilitating regional economic monitoring and policy dialogues; and (iii) supporting research and publication work on RCI. Over the past six years, ARIC has become a reliable source of knowledge and information on RCI. Its key publications the Asia Recovery Report, Asia Economic Monitor (AEM), and Asian Economic Integration Monitor (AEIM) have assisted ADB DMC policymakers increase their awareness and knowledge on RCI trends and issues. They have also been recognized by top-tier media like Reuters, Financial Times, BBC, CNBC, and Bloomberg as reliable source of economic and RCI information. In particular, the AEIM is the only publication in Asia that tracks the progress of regional integration in the region. It also discusses key issues such as infrastructure connectivity, labor mobility, the cost and benefit of integration, and approaches to unraveling the Asian _noodle bowl_. ARIC has also supported the ASEAN+3 economic monitoring and policy dialogue process through its report on Economic Prospects, Risks, and Policy Issues for the informal meeting of ASEAN+3 Finance and Central Bank Deputies. ARIC has trained DMC policymakers on the early warning system, which have strengthened the capacities of member countries to spot, assess and mitigate economic and financial vulnerabilities emanating from global shocks. Its databases Macroeconomic and Financial, FTA and Integration Indicators have become authoritative data source on regional economic integration. Its RCI seminar, RCI Working Paper Series and collaboration with other regional institutions (ASEAN, APEC, and AMRO) has fostered greater knowledge sharing and collaboration.
Today, the ARIC website attracts around 95,000 unique visitors with over 700,000 page views. Over 440 organizations ranging from multilateral, regional, academic, government, media and the private institutions have embedded links to the ARIC website. These include the ASEAN, World Bank, OECD, WTO, ILO, UN, Harvard, Monash, Berkely, National University of Singapore, Bloomberg, Reuters, Wall Street Online, India Times, US Treasury, Korean Development Institute, Thailand Department of Trade Negotiations, East Asia Forum, among others. The ARIC website has also been accessed in over 170 countries in 2012, with an average of 4,500 visits from the top 10 countries the Philippines, India, United States, Singapore, Republic of Korea, Thailand, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Russia.
To further promote greater RCI in the region, this TA will continue to produce knowledge and information products to track recent trends and thinking regarding salient RCI trends and issues. A key priority of the TA is to further improve the Asian Economic Integration Monitor by improving the online RCI indicator system that will track the progress of regional integration. It will also support a number of RCI-related research on infrastructure connectivity, labor mobility, crisis and regionalism, drivers and derailers of RCI, and RCI and South-South cooperation. The TA will also incorporate infrastructure indicators in its database so as to track the degree of physical connectivity in the region. To promote greater knowledge sharing and policy dialogue, the TA will also organize RCI seminars (policy consultations and round-table) in various parts of the region. Given that the risk from the global financial and Eurozone crises continues, the TA will continue to monitor macroeconomic interdependence in the region.
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy||
The model of regional cooperation and integration (RCI) adopted in developing Asia (the region) has several unique characteristics compared to regional cooperation in Europe or other parts of the world. The region has made solid progress based on its pragmatic, bottom-up, institution light and private sector led approaches. Following the 2008/09 global financial crisis, advanced economies are expected to undergo a prolonged period of structural reform a _new normal_ due to weak economic fundamentals. This means that the region needs to rely more on itself to find new sources of growth. RCI could play a more critical role than in the past, by facilitating greater trade flows, promoting deeper financial market integration, and creating seamless logistics and infrastructure. Sustained regional cooperation may also result in better coordinated macroeconomic, financial, and trade policies which would help drive a more efficient and welfare-oriented Asia and the Pacific. While there are costs arising from integration, effective cooperation can help maximize the net benefits and lay the foundation for a more inclusive growth.
However, while early work on RCI has achieved several _low hanging fruits_ in the region, there are many complex RCI issues today such as risk sharing, trade in services, labor mobility, and proliferation of bilateral and regional free trade agreements; and these are further exacerbated by regional conflicts. After the global financial crisis, the region and the world have become more inter-connected and multi polar; with Asia standing to gain from this by strengthening its regional ties. In particular, greater regional cooperation will help Asian economies develop unified positions and policy options vis- -vis advanced and developing economies outside of the region.
|Impact||Enhanced implementation of existing RCi initiatives and development of new ones by key stakeholders|
|Description of Outcome||Increased utilization of ARIC's RCI-related knowledge products by key stakeholders.|
|Progress Toward Outcome|
|Description of Project Outputs||
Online and print version of the AEIM published
Online and print version of other RCI-related knowledge products including the RCI information pack and RCI working paper series disseminated.
Timely and accurate RCI databases with expanded country coverage
A more informative and updated ARIC website disseminated
RCI seminars, roundtable and policy consultations conducted
A knowledge bridge to link RCI work in ADB
|Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)|
|Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects|
|Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation|
|During Project Design|
|During Project Implementation|
international consultants: Regional Cooperation Economists (total 6 person-months total); Economics and Copyeditor (15 person-months);
national consultants: Team Leader (total 18 person-months); Senior Economic Analysts (total 72 person-months); Economic Analysts (total 180 person-months); Web Administrator and Programmers (total 18 person-months); Multimedia Designer and Developer (total 18 person-months); System and Database Developer (total 18 person-months); Typesetter (total 4 person-months); Project Specialist (total 18 person-months)
Resource Persons (total 3 person-month)
|Procurement||Database, equipment, and computer software|
|Responsible ADB Officer||Kang, Jong Woo|
|Responsible ADB Department||Economic Research and Regional Cooperation Department|
|Responsible ADB Division||ERCI|
Asian Development Bank
6 ADB Avenue,
Mandaluyong City 1550, Philippines
|Concept Clearance||31 May 2013|
|Fact Finding||29 May 2013 to 29 May 2013|
|Approval||06 Dec 2013|
|Last Review Mission||-|
|Last PDS Update||06 Nov 2013|
|Approval||Signing Date||Effectivity Date||Closing|
|06 Dec 2013||-||06 Dec 2013||31 May 2015||31 Aug 2016||-|
|Financing Plan/TA Utilization||Cumulative Disbursements|
|1,500,000.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||0.00||1,500,000.00||06 Dec 2013||1,329,977.05|
Project Data Sheets (PDS) contain summary information on the project or program. Because the PDS is a work in progress, some information may not be included in its initial version but will be added as it becomes available. Information about proposed projects is tentative and indicative.
The Public Communications Policy (PCP) recognizes that transparency and accountability are essential to development effectiveness. It establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced.
The Accountability Mechanism provides a forum where people adversely affected by ADB-assisted projects can voice and seek solutions to their problems and report alleged noncompliance of ADB's operational policies and procedures.
In preparing any country program or strategy, financing any project, or by making any designation of, or reference to, a particular territory or geographic area in this document, the Asian Development Bank does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal or other status of any territory or area.
|Title||Document Type||Document Date|
|Asia Regional Integration Center, Phase V: Technical Assistance Completion Report||TA Completion Reports||Mar 2017|
|Asia Regional Integration Center, Phase V||Technical Assistance Reports||Dec 2013|
Safeguard Documents See also: Safeguards
Safeguard documents provided at the time of project/facility approval may also be found in the list of linked documents provided with the Report and Recommendation of the President.
None currently available.
Evaluation Documents See also: Independent Evaluation
None currently available.
None currently available.
The Public Communications Policy (PCP) establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced in its operations to facilitate stakeholder participation in ADB's decision-making. For more information, refer to the Safeguard Policy Statement, Operations Manual F1, and Operations Manual L3.
Requests for information may also be directed to the InfoUnit.