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Masatsugu Asakawa

Masatsugu Asakawa is the President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Chairperson of ADB’s Board of Directors. He was elected President by ADB’s Board of Governors and assumed office on 17 January 2020.

24 November 2022 CAREC ministers endorse new green recovery, food security, clean energy cooperation initiatives

On 24 November 2022, ministers from 10 member countries of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) Program met virtually for the 21st Ministerial Conference on Revitalizing Regional Cooperation for a Green and Sustainable Recovery. They endorsed three strategic documents: the Post-Pandemic Framework for a Green, Sustainable, Inclusive Recovery; the Cooperation Framework for Agricultural Development and Food Security in the CAREC Region; and the CAREC Green Energy Alliance. They also discussed how to support regional actions to address climate change under the CAREC Program. President Masatsugu Asakawa delivered the keynote address, while senior representatives from the People’s Republic of China Government co-hosted the conference. Read the news release

15 November 2022 President Asakawa attends G20 Leaders’ Summit; Meets with PRC Vice-Minister of Finance

President Masatsugu Asakawa attended the G20 Leaders’ Summit on 15-16 November 2022 in Bali. He participated in the leaders’ discussions on food and energy security, where he highlighted ADB’s work on energy transition, including our collaboration with Indonesia on ETM. He also emphasized ADB’s commitment to supporting food security in its developing member countries DMCs through the $14 billion package announced at the ADB Annual Meeting in September. In the leaders’ session on digital transformation, President Asakawa noted the importance of closing the digital divide and summarized ADB’s work in this area. The President also delivered a keynote speech at the B20 Summit. President Asakawa on 14 November also met with the People’s Republic of China Ministry of Finance Vice-Minister Wang Dongwei in Bali, Indonesia at the sidelines of the G20 meeting. They discussed the ADB-PRC partnership, progress and challenges of ADB’s operations in the PRC, and the implementation of the ADB-PRC Country Partnership Strategy (2021-2025).  

14 November 2022 President Asakawa opens launch of Indonesia ETM country platform

The grand launch of the Indonesia Energy Transition Mechanism (ETM) Country Platform was held in Bali, Indonesia on 14 November 2022, co-organized by the Ministry of Finance, PT Sarana Multi Infrastruktur (PT SMI), and ADB. President Masatsugu Asakawa opened the event congratulating Indonesia’s government and Minister of Finance and ADB Governor Sri Mulyani Indrawati for the leadership and significant progress made since the ETM Southeast Asia Partnership launch last year at COP26, including the $500 million in-principle endorsement from the Climate Investment Fund Accelerating Coal Transition program and a landmark memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore the first private sector ETM transaction in Indonesia. Minister Sri Mulyani thanked ADB for being the strongest supporter throughout the development of the ETM in Indonesia which led to a “contagious effect” for other partners to join and support. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, among many dignitaries joining the launch, called on MDBs to do more, and said that ETM as well as the Innovative Finance Facility for Climate in Asia and the Pacific, or IF-CAP, are great examples of creative initiatives that help address pressing needs in pursuit of the Paris climate goals. The event included high-level panels, a press engagement featuring President Asakawa and Minister Sri Mulyani, and multiple MOU signings including between PT SMI and ADB for the Country Platform and for the groundbreaking private sector transaction led by ADB’s Private Sector Operations Depatment (PSOD). President Asakawa, VP Ahmed Saeed, Southeast Asia Deprtment Director General Ramesh Subramaniam, PSOD Deputy Director General Christopher Thieme and others in the ETM team participated in the launch event representing our One ADB push for ETM to accelerate the transition from fossil to clean energy. Read the news release and Q&A on the MOU. Visit the ETM page on ADB.org for more information.

10 November 2022 President Asakawa addresses IMT-GT Leaders’ Summit in Cambodia; Meets with Indonesia's President Widodo

At the Indonesia–Malaysia–Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT–GT) Leaders’ Summit in Phnom Penh on 10 November 2022, President Masatsugu Asakawa commended IMT-GT on the achievements of economic cooperation, the adoption of the ADB-supported IMT-GT Implementation Blueprint 2022-2026, and pandemic recovery efforts. He highlighted recommendations of recent ADB studies on IMT-GT special economic zones and economic corridors to help the subregion foster economic recovery and growth. He also touched on ADB initiatives to help IMT-GT in climate change mitigation and adaptation, sustainable energy systems, smart and livable cities, and tourism revival. The summit was chaired by Thailand Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and attended by Indonesia President Joko Widodo, Malaysia Speaker of the House of Representatives Tan Sri Azhar Azizan Harun, and ASEAN Secretary General Lim Jock Hoi. President Asakawa also met with President Widodo on the sidelines of the IMT-GT Summit. They discussed a range of issues including the uncertainties in the global economy and the impact on Indonesia’s sustainable growth, food security, and energy transition including the Energy Transition Mechanism (ETM).

7 November 2022 President Asakawa meets with Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Chair Helen Clark

President Masatsugu Asakawa and Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) Chair and former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark, in a meeting on 7 November 2022, explored potential areas of cooperation between the two institutions. They discussed EITI’s interest in promoting beneficial ownership transparency, tackling corruption, and supporting domestic resource mobilization and renewable energy transition in Asian gas, oil, and mineral-producing countries.

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Masatsugu Asakawa is the President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Chairperson of ADB’s Board of Directors. He was elected President by ADB’s Board of Governors and assumed office on 17 January 2020. In August 2021, he was reelected for a 5-year term starting on 24 November 2021.

Under Mr. Asakawa’s leadership, ADB made significant contributions to the region’s COVID-19 pandemic response and recovery planning with a $20 billion comprehensive response package and $9 billion Asia Pacific Vaccine Access Facility. He also played a key role in rolling out a series of new and innovative financing initiatives—including an Energy Transition Mechanism — to spur the region’s low-carbon development and elevated ADB’s 2030 cumulative climate financing ambition to $100 billion as ADB continues to focus on the battle against climate change.

Prior to joining ADB, he served as Special Advisor to Japan’s Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, and has a close-to-four decades’ career at the Ministry of Finance with diverse professional experience that cuts across both domestic and international fronts.

In the immediate aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis, Mr. Asakawa, in his capacity as Executive Assistant to Prime Minister Taro Aso, took part in the first G20 Leaders’ Summit Meeting in November 2008. He was instrumental in orchestrating a globally coordinated financial package to abate the financial crisis, including a $100 billion loan from Japan to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Then in 2016, in his capacity as Vice Minister of Finance for International Affairs, he took on a leading role for the G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ meeting in Sendai under the Japanese presidency, where a sustainable and inclusive development agenda was extensively discussed.

Most recently, he served as Finance Deputy for the G20 meetings under the Japanese presidency, playing a pivotal role for the success of the G20 Osaka Summit as well as the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors’ meeting in Fukuoka. Some of his outstanding achievements in Osaka include the endorsement by the G20 Leaders of the “G20 Principles for Quality Infrastructure Investment” and the “G20 Shared Understanding on the Importance of UHC Financing in Developing Countries”. Before these, he had occupied various prominent positions within the Finance Ministry, including director positions in charge of development policy issues, foreign exchange markets, and international tax policy.

Mr. Asakawa’s professional experience extends beyond the realms of the Japanese government. Most notably, he served as Chief Advisor to ADB President Kimimasa Tarumizu between 1989 and 1992, during which time he spearheaded the creation of a new office focused on strategic planning. Also, he had frequent engagement with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in such positions as Chair for Committee on Fiscal Affairs (2011–2016). Furthermore, he was a senior staff at the Fiscal Affairs Department of the IMF (1996–2000). In the meantime, he gave lectures as Visiting Professor at the Graduate School of Economic Science, Saitama University (2006–2009), and at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo (2012–2015).

Mr. Asakawa obtained his BA from University of Tokyo (Economics Faculty) in 1981, and MPA from Princeton University, USA, in 1985.