ADB’s Asakawa reelected for second term

Published August 31, 2021, 3:21 PM

by Chino S. Leyco

Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa was reelected for a new five-year term in office at the helm of the Manila-based multilateral institution.

In a statement, ADB said Tuesday, Aug. 31, that Asakawa, 63, received unanimous support from the bank’s board of governors for a second term that will begin on November 24, 2021.

First elected as ADB’s 10th President in November 2019, Asakawa assumed the position in January last year to serve the remaining term of his predecessor, Takehiko Nakao.

Asakawa, who served as Japan’s vice finance minister for international affairs, said “my vision for the upcoming term is for ADB to serve as the premier development institution for Asia and the Pacific.”

He also vowed to support ADB’s developing member countries (DMC) in recovering from the coronavirus pandemic on a renewed path toward the “prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable future we envisioned in our Strategy 2030.”

Since taking office, ADB has made 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.

ADB also concluded in September 2020 a successful replenishment of more than $4 billion for its Asian Development Fund and Technical Assistance Special Fund, which provide critical grant resources for vulnerable DMCs.

Prior to joining ADB in 2019, Asakawa has a close-to-four decades’ career at the Ministry of Finance, where he gained extensive and diverse experience in international finance and development.

Asakawa also led international taxation discussions including Base Erosion Profit Shifting project as Chair for Committee on Fiscal Affairs in the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development from 2011 to 2016.

Born in 1958, Asakawa holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Tokyo and a Master in Public Affairs from Princeton University.