TOKYO, Sept. 17 (Xinhua) -- Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso said on Tuesday that the government will recommend Masatsugu Asakawa, former vice finance minister for international affairs, as the next chief of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Aso said in a news conference that 61-year-old Asakawa is believed to be "the best qualified person" for the position. It remains uncertain whether other countries will put forward a candidate.
Earlier Tuesday, the ADB announced the resignation of its ninth president, Takehiko Nakao. In a statement, the Manila-based multilateral bank said the resignation of two-termer Nakao will take effect on Jan. 16 next year. His five-year term was supposed to end in November 2021.
The top ADB post has been held by Japanese since the launch of the development bank in 1966. According to Aso, Japan will nominate "in an expeditious manner a high-caliber candidate" to succeed Nakao.
Asakawa, who became the longest-serving top currency diplomat after filling the role from July 2015 to July this year, has been involved in various international conferences, including gatherings of the Group of Seven and Group of 20.
After stepping down as vice finance minister for international affairs in July, the Shizuoka Prefecture native has served as an adviser to the Cabinet Office and the Finance Ministry.