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ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 68 members—49 from the region.

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.

27 June 2023 President Asakawa meets World Bank President Banga

On 27 June, President Masatsugu Asakawa held an introductory call with new World Bank President Ajay Banga. They discussed the importance of the partnership between the two institutions, particularly to tackle the global challenges of climate change and poverty. President Banga explained his new mission statement for the World Bank Group, to ”eradicate poverty for a livable planet” and wished to work closely with ADB and other multilateral development banks (MDBs). He also noted that economic growth, job creation and fighting climate change are inseparable. President Asakawa highlighted ADB’s key innovations such as the Innovative Finance Facility for Climate in Asia and the Pacific (IF-CAP) and Energy Transition Mechanism (ETM). Both presidents underscored the need to coordinate closely to support countries facing challenging circumstances and agreed to explore opportunities to meet in person.

23 June 2023 President Asakawa meets with senior government officials in UK, Norway

During his mission to Europe from 19 to 23 June, President Masatsugu Asakawa discussed areas for cooperation with partners, including climate finance, the multilateral development banks (MDB) evolution agenda, and the Asian Development Fund. ADB’s commitment to strengthening domestic resource mobilization in developing member countries (DMCs) through international tax cooperation was also highlighted. In Oslo, President Asakawa met with Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre; Bjorg Sandkjaer, State Secretary for International Development and ADB Governor; Åsmund Aukrust, MP, Deputy Chair of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence; as well as stakeholders and members of the business community at Innovation Norway. In London, President Asakawa met with Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office's (FCDO) Andrew Mitchell, MP, State Minister for Development and Africa and ADB Governor; Anne-Marie Trevelyan, State Minister for Indo-Pacific and ADB Alternate Governor; Nick Dyer, Director General, Humanitarian and Development; and Odile Renaud-Basso, EBRD President. The President participated in the forum Multilateral development bank reform in a climate-changed world: A panel discussion with ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa, as part of ODI’s MDB Leaders Series on 20 June in London. 

16 June 2023 18th Asia Clean Energy Forum highlights a carbon-neutral future amid expanding private sector participation

Over 1,300 participants from 66 countries joined in-person the 18th Asian Clean Energy Forum (ACEF) held from 13 to 16 June at the ADB headquarters. President Masatsugu Asakawa, in recorded welcome remarks, emphasized that ADB supports the just low-carbon transition, along with decarbonization, decreasing energy intensity, digitalization, and decentralization in the energy sector. This year’s theme, Navigating Toward a Carbon-Neutral Future through Clean Energy Solutions, highlighted the importance of innovative technologies and business models for renewable and more efficient energy, greater private sector participation, and gender equality for more relevant and grassroots solutions.

13 June 2023 President Asakawa meets with Tajikistan President; leads 25-year partnership celebration in Dushanbe

During his mission to Tajikistan from 11 to 13 June, President Masatsugu Asakawa met with Tajikistan President Emomali Rahmon and other senior government officials to discuss the country’s development challenges and priorities as well as ADB’s ongoing and future support, including in climate change, clean energy, human capital, and private sector development. President Asakawa and Tajikistan Prime Minister Kohir Rasulzoda on 12 June led the celebration of 25 years of ADB and Tajikistan partnership and inaugurated the new Tajikistan Resident Mission office. The President also met with ADB staff, and visited ADB-supported road and energy project sites and launched a rural solar-powered water supply system designed to improve villagers' access to clean drinking water, saving women time and labor. Read news release and watch the partnership video.

10 June 2023 President Asakawa affirms ADB’s support to scale up Kazakhstan’s access to global climate finance

President Masatsugu Asakawa met with Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev and senior government officials during his mission from 7 to 10 June to discuss ways to further strengthen ADB’s 30-year partnership with the country. President Asakawa affirmed ADB’s readiness to help Kazakhstan convert its climate commitments into supporting investments and scale up access to global climate finance. At the Astana International Forum, he made the urgent case for the renewable energy potential to help meet countries’ growing population needs affordably and with fewer carbon emissions. President Asakawa witnessed the signing of a loan agreement to modernize a combined heat and power plant in Almaty, which is set to significantly reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, and the signing of the Supplementary Agreement for the new phase of the Knowledge and Experience Exchange Program for financing priority socioeconomic research and capacity development. At the Foreign Investors’ Council, he spoke about the importance of digital technology for the country’s inclusive and sustainable development. He also met the beneficiaries of the ADB-supported Women Entrepreneurship Development Center and ADB staff. Read the news release.

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.