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AIT Explores Collaborative Opportunities with Asian Development Bank to Drive Regional Sustainable Development

22 May 2023
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By AIT Public Affairs

22 May 2023 – The President of the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Prof. Kazuo Yamamoto, paid a courtesy visit to Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa in Manila, Philippines, on 22 May 2023. Accompanied by Prof. Shobhakar Dhakal, Vice President for Academic Affairs at AIT; Prof. P. Abdul Salam, Dean of the School of Environment, Resources and Development, and Dr. Chutiporn Anutariya, Associate Dean of the School of Engineering and Technology, President Prof. Yamamoto provided an update on AIT’s impact in the region and the ongoing activities for the region’s development. The objective of the visit was to explore areas of mutual interest and explore opportunities for collaboration between the two institutions.

In addition to a courtesy visit to ADB President, the AIT team, led by Vice President Prof. Dhakal, engaged in a series of meetings and discussions with other key members of ADB’s Senior Management Team. The deliberations focused on how ADB and AIT can work together to enhance regional capacity in areas of climate change, energy transition, water, social development, and urban development. The aim was to explore opportunities for AIT’s complementary role and collaboration in various sectors.

AIT team met Mr. Haruto Takimura, Chief Advisor to the President; Mr. Woochong Um, Managing Director General from the Office of the President; Mr. Kenichi Yokoyama, Director General of South Asia and  Mr. Norio Saito, Director, Urban Development and Water Division of the South Asia Department. Additionally, discussions were held with Mr. Ramesh Subramaniam, Director General and Chief- Designate Sectors Group; Mr. Toru Kubo, Senior Director-Designate of Climate Change, Resilience and Environment and Ms. Noelle O’Brien, Chief of Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management Thematic Group Concurrently Director, Climate change and Disaster Risk Management Division. 

AIT Team engaged in productive discussion with Ms. Ayako Inagaki, Director, Human and Social Development Division; Ms. Neeta Pokhrel, Chief of Water Sector Group; Mr. Priyantha Wijayatunga, Chief of Energy Sector Group; Mr. Manoj Sharma Chief of Urban Sector Group, Urban SG, Sector Advisory Service Cluster, from the Sustainable Development and Climate change Department. The team also met with Mr. Alessio Giardino, Senior Water Specialist (Climate Change), Water Sector Group; Mr. Hong So Lee, Senior Urban Specialist (Smart Cities), Urban Sector Group; Ms. Luxmi Sharma, Senior Urban Development Specialist of Urban Development and Water Division of the South Asia Department and Ms. Architrandi Priambodo, Senior Energy Specialist, Energy Division; and Ms. Emma M. Veve, Senior Advisor, Office of the Director General of the Southeast Asia Department.

The meetings with ADB officials highlighted the significance of AIT’s collaboration with ADB, particularly through the ADB-Japan Scholarship Program (JSP). The AIT team interacted and shared experiences of the ADB-Japan scholarship program with Mr. Hiroki Kasahara, Principal Financing Partnership Specialist of the Partner Funds Division, Mr. Sho Tabata, Financing Partnership Specialist of the Partner Funds Division, and other members of the fund providing ADB-Japan scholarship. AIT expressed gratitude for the collaboration and highlighted the impressive impacts of the ADB-Japan scholarship program in the region through AIT. The AIT team also visited SDCC/SDPF’s Photo Exhibit for the JFPR History Book- Two Decades of Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR).  

The visit underscored the immense potential for partnership and collaboration between ADB and AIT in promoting regional capacity building and addressing the pressing challenges faced by Asian countries. By harnessing their synergies, both institutions can make a lasting impact in driving sustainable development in the region.