AsDB/AsDF – Asian Development Bank and Asian Development Fund

The Asian Development Fund (AsDF) managed by the Asian Development Bank (AsDB) grants loans to its poorer member countries in the Asia-Pacific region to help them reduce poverty and improve people’s quality of life. This should be achieved through inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth and regional integration.

The AsDB mainly finances public sector projects but also provides limited support to private investments that promote development.
Apart from mobilising financial resources, the AsDF also provides technical assistance. In this way it helps to bridge the development gap in the Asia-Pacific region, home to both some of the world's fastest-rising and most vulnerable economies.


The AsDB and the AsDF are guided by their Strategy 2020, a vision of an Asia-Pacific free of poverty and with thriving modern economies that are well integrated with each other and the world. Under this vision, they follow three complementary strategic agendas:

  • Inclusive economic growth
  • Environmentally sustainable growth
  • South Cooperation Department and integration

Overarching themes of the AsDB are the development of the private sector, the promotion of good governance and of gender equity as well as the improvement of access to knowledge.

Results for the water sector

The AsDF installed or renovated more than 14,000 km of water supply pipes giving 2.1 million households access to clean drinking water. Regarding agriculture, it improved more than 1.8 million hectares of land by scaling up irrigation, drainage and flood management.

Switzerland’s commitment

Switzerland’s priorities

Switzerland has been a member of the AsDB since 1967 and has participated in the AsDF since its foundation in 1973. The Bank’s mission is consistent with Switzerland’s objectives of reducing poverty and disaster risks while facilitating environmentally and socially sustainable economic development. Switzerland is therefore actively contributing to discussions and decisions of the Board of Governors and the Board of Directors.

In the medium term, Switzerland focuses on the following objectives:

  • Improve the AsDB’s corporate governance
  • Increase development effectiveness
  • Raise the AsDB’s contribution to good governance and anti-corruption efforts
  • Mainstream climate change
  • Strengthening the AsDB’s performance in the water sector

Results for development effectiveness and focus on good governance

When it comes to development effectiveness, the overall quality of completed operations has continued to improve. The review of the AsDB’s results framework has contributed to improving it in particular with regard to a better focus on inclusive growth. Currently the AsDB and its Independent Evaluation
Department are analysing the AsDB’s performance in the area of governance and anti-corruption as requested by Switzerland and other members.


Overall, the Bank has received good marks for its effectiveness. It is considered to be one of the best performing and best managed multilateral organisations. Nevertheless, there are several challenges that need to be addressed.

In the area of good governance and anti-corruption as well as in the application of a conflict sensitive approach, progress is still slow. Political will and leadership are needed in the AsDB to make effective progress in these sensitive areas.