Asian Development Bank: History, Objectives and More

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Asian Development Bank

The Asian Development Bank or ADB is one of the most important multilateral financial organisations. This organisation directly affects the Indian Economy. As per the recent report released by ADB, the top five shareholders of the Asian Development Bank are Japan & the United States (each with 15.6% of total shares), the People’s Republic of China (6.4%), India (6.3%), and Australia (5.8%). This topic is important for the Prelims and Mains exam preparation of the UPSC Exam.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore ADB’s latest news, its historical roots, its functions and objectives, and its governance structure, as well as answer some frequently asked questions.

Asian Development Bank Latest News 

Staying updated with the latest news about ADB is crucial for UPSC aspirants. While specific developments may change over time, one thing remains constant: ADB’s commitment to advancing sustainable economic development across Asia and the Pacific.

  • Masatsugu Asakawa Masatsugu Asakawa is the President of the Asian Development Bank (17 January 2020) for the next 5 years and the Chairperson of ADB’s Board of Directors.
  • Recent news includes ADB approving a substantial $1.5 billion loan to India to support its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • This loan falls under ADB’s Covid-19 Active Response and Expenditure Support (CARES) Program, funded through the Covid-19 Pandemic Response Option (CPRO) under ADB’s Countercyclical Support Facility.
  • ADB’s involvement in various projects, such as rural connectivity enhancement in Maharashtra and water supply infrastructure development in Jharkhand, continues to make headlines.

Must Read: What is the Full Form of ADB? – Leverage Edu

What is Asian Development Bank & its History?

Asian Development Bank (ADB), established in December 1966, has its headquarters in Manila, Philippines. Its fundamental mission is to promote social and economic development in Asia and the Pacific. India, as a founding member of ADB, plays a pivotal role in this institution. As of now, ADB encompasses 68 members, with 49 hailing from Asia and the Pacific region and 19 from outside.

Also Read: List of Important International Organizations

What Does ADB Do?

ADB plays a multifaceted role in fostering development:

  1. Financial Assistance: ADB assists its members and partners by offering loans, technical aid, grants, and equity investments aimed at promoting social and economic development.
  2. Maximising Development Impact: ADB strives to maximise the development impact of its assistance by facilitating policy dialogues, providing advisory services, and mobilising financial resources through co-financing operations involving official, commercial, and export credit sources.

Goals of the Asian Development Bank

The primary objective of ADB is to reduce poverty and promote inclusive and environmentally sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific. ADB envisions a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable region while continually working towards eradicating extreme poverty.

How is ADB Governed?

ADB operates with a governance structure that resembles the World Bank’s, including a weighted voting system. Votes are allocated based on members’ capital subscriptions. The highest decision-making body in ADB is the Board of Governors, comprising one representative from each member nation, with 48 from the Asia-Pacific and 19 from beyond the region.

Asian Development Bank Members

From its inception in 1966 with 31 members, ADB has expanded to include 68 members. India, as a founding member, remains committed to ADB’s mission. These members comprise both regional and non-regional entities. The Board of Governors, ADB’s supreme policy-making body, features representatives from each member nation, totalling 48 from the Asia-Pacific and 19 from outside the region.

ADB Regional Members: Afghanistan, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Georgia, Hong Kong, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kiribati, Kyrgyz Republic, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nauru, Nepal, New Zealand, Niue, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, People’s Republic of China, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, Taipei, China, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, and Viet Nam.

ADB Non-regional Members: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States.

The top shareholders of ADB are Japan and the United States, each with 15.6% of total shares, followed by the People’s Republic of China (6.4%), India (6.3%), and Australia (5.8%).

Roles and Functions of ADB

ADB’s roles and functions closely mirror those of the World Bank:

  1. Poverty Reduction: ADB aims to reduce poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth, as well as regional integration.
  2. Investments: ADB provides loans, grants, and information sharing across various sectors, including infrastructure, healthcare services, climate change adaptation, and natural resource management.
  3. Development Initiatives: ADB supports nations in preparing for climate change impacts and managing natural resources effectively.

ADB UPSC Questions

As a UPSC aspirant, you might be wondering about the relevance of ADB in your preparations. ADB often features in UPSC questions, both in the Prelims and Mains and occasionally in the IAS Interview stage. While the Prelims syllabus focuses on current affairs related to ADB, the Mains syllabus delves into ADB’s functions, recent developments, and its impact on India and the region. Here are some common ADB-related questions you might encounter:

When was the Asian Development Bank established?

ADB was established in the year 1966.

Where is the headquarters of the Asian Development Bank located?

ADB’s headquarters is situated in Manila, Philippines.

What is the primary objective of the Asian Development Bank?

ADB’s primary objective is to reduce poverty and promote sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific.

How does the Asian Development Bank provide financial assistance?

ADB provides financial assistance in the form of grants, loans, technical assistance, and equity investments.

Also Read: How to Prepare for UPSC: Best Study Material & Tips 2023


What is the Asian Development Bank?

ADB is a regional development bank established in 1966, dedicated to promoting social and economic development in Asia and the Pacific.

How does the Asian Development Bank work?

ADB provides financial assistance, including loans, grants, and technical aid, to support social and economic development in its member countries.

How can I download ADB UPSC notes?

You can find UPSC notes related to ADB in various online resources and study materials.

Which country has the largest share in the Asian Development Bank?

Japan and the United States have the largest shares in ADB, each holding 15.6% of total shares.

Hope you have gotten all the relevant information about the Asian Development Bank! If you want to know more about topics like this, then visit our general knowledge page! Alternatively, you can also read our blog on general knowledge for competitive exams!

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