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India has decided to be a contributor to the Asian Development Fund and will contribute $30 million in installments beginning October, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said Sunday.
"India has decided to become a contributor to the Asian Development Fund and will contribute $30 million towards ADF-11 in agreed installments beginning October 2014," Chidambaram said addressing the 47th annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Kazakhstan's capital Astana, a finance ministry statement here said.
The Asian Development Fund (ADF), funded by ADB's member countries, offers loans at very low interest rates as well as grants to help fight poverty in the Asia and Pacific region.
Emphasising that "we should aim to have ADB double its lending capacity over the next 10 years", Chidambaram said: "It is only natural that we feel closest to ADB and are most comfortable partnering with them. Our vision and aims converge."
Pointing out that the Asian multilateral bank is currently facing the twin challenges of portfolio performance and declining disbursements, the Indian finance minister said ADB's net financial support to members declined to its lowest level in the last five years to just over $100 million.
According to a bank review, average delay in completion of successful projects is 2.3 years with one-sixth of projects getting delayed by over four years.
"This underscores the need for internal reforms, re-engineering of business processes and delegation and decentralization," Chidambaram said.