Thematic Evaluation Study of ADB Support for Regional Cooperation and Integration

The promotion of the regional cooperation and integration (RCI) agenda, a corporate level strategic agenda of ADB, is recognized as having helped in fostering economic growth and addressing development challenges.

This report found that ADB has made progress in mainstreaming the RCI agenda and undertaking RCI work. The following are some of the study’s results:

  • Various ADB departments have contributed to the RCI agenda, even as it was not a fully integrated or well-coordinated effort.
  • Success rates for projects labeled as RCI have been above the average for all ADB supported projects, even though RCI projects are typically more complex than non-RCI ones.
  • Key stakeholders in ADB countries’ governments and development partners have given ADB good marks for its RCI work.
  • The enabling environment for the mainstreaming of the RCI agenda had important weaknesses that can be dealt with.
  • There is good justification for broadening the RCI agenda to work on issues beyond cross-border infrastructure, especially on matters of trade and investment integration, monetary and financial integration, regional public goods, notably climate change and biodiversity.

The report recommended the following to feed into ADB’s RCI operational plan and strengthen the value and impact of RCI:

  • Broaden the RCI agenda beyond cross-border infrastructure (while maintaining the latter);
  • Deepen it with attention to fragile, island and linchpin countries;
  • Strengthen coordination across and within subregions;
  • Bolster country ownership for RCI; and
  • Develop new RCI project models.

Read more about this report here: