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Publication(Washington, DC, 2011) World BankHigh volatility in the world prices of petroleum has been a characteristic feature of the global economy in the last decade. World petroleum prices increased four-fold between 2004 and 2008 and, and following a drop in prices in the second half of 2008, petroleum prices have been rising again, and they are several times higher than they were two decades ago. Since high and volatility of prices is likely to be a permanent feature of the global economy for the foreseeable future, they merit a reconsideration of the national transport and taxation policies that were put in place when fuel prices were not such a significant component of trade-related transactions costs in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) countries. Transport practices that were based on the assumption of low price of fuel are not sustainable, and policies neglect fuel efficiency considerations through lowering the fuel consumption of vehicles measures are no longer sustainable. Efficient and low transport cost is essential to achieve regional economic integration and strengthen Africa's competitiveness in external markets. Higher diesel prices also impact on the prices of all other goods which use diesel as an intermediate input. The most significant among them with implications for the poor in low-income developing countries is food, on which the poor spend a disproportionately high share of their total household expenditures. This report is in three parts in the first part, transport fuel prices in the countries of SSA are compared with those of other regions of the world. The comparison is not only in terms of the actual retail prices but also, but taking account of per capita incomes and truck revenues, also in terms of affordability. This Part also provides evidence of the make-up of transport fuel prices in SSA countries, as a first step in assessing how they can be dealt with. The second part provides new evidence of the impact of these high fuel prices on the export competiveness of a sample of six SSA countries. It also provides a shorter description of the results of a study of the impact of fuel prices on logistics costs in Central America, since so far there have not been any studies of the impact of high transport fuel prices on logistics and food costs in SSA countries. The third part deals with the ways in which the impact of high transport fuel prices can be addressed. Two main areas of action are described, those that would reduce the retail price of transport fuel and those that would increase fuel efficiency, so they impact of high prices would be reduced. This section focuses on diesel fuel, as this is by far the most used by the trucks that transport export products and are involved in domestic logistics. This section concludes with some ideas on what could be done next to make progress on implementing the most promising ideas for reducing the impact of high transport fuel prices.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-09) Alexeeva, Victoria ; Padam, Gouthami ; Queiroz, CesarThe study is based on a new specialized dataset generated for the road sector contracts of Bank-financed projects in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is organized as follows: Chapter two describes the data and a set of indicators constructed to perform comparative assessments of the procurement and implementation processes across 13 African countries. Chapter three points out the trends in selected key indicators and performs an inventory of risks for each road works contract using a checklist of possible entry points of corrupt activities or red flags. Through comparison of the road works contracts that had complaints received by the Bank's Department of Institutional Integrity (INT) and other contracts in the sample, it examines if the data exhibit a pattern of indicators consistent with the presence of allegations of corruption or fraud. Chapter four looks at selected issues such as high bid rates, low response to invitation to bid, and cost and time overruns as they were addressed by the project implementing agencies. Finally, chapter five provides selected recommendations to enhance accountability and control of corruption in the road projects financed by the World Bank.
Towards the Mainstreaming of an Approach to Include Social Benefits Within Road Appraisal : A Case Study from Uganda(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-04) Odoki, Jennaro B. ; Ahmed, Farhad ; Taylor, Gary ; Okello, Sunday A.Developing countries dedicate a considerable share of total infrastructure investment to roads. The adoption in 2000 of the Millennium Development Goals and an increasing emphasis on justifying road investments in terms of their contribution to poverty reduction have directed considerable attention to low volume rural roads. Often the poorest of the poor live in remote rural areas and improved access to social and economic services is a key factor in raising their living standards. The traditional road appraisal frameworks do not fit well with this trend as they generally ignore the impact of social benefit and poverty reduction. Past attempts to overcome these problems have lacked consistency. Therefore, there is a need to develop a consistent framework to address the poverty and social benefit aspects in a systematic manner. A study into the identification and treatment of social benefits in road transport project appraisal was conducted in 2003-04. The study highlighted the problems of identification, separation, measurement, forecasting and valuation of social benefits within a cost-benefit approach framework. It recommended a flexible approach using the principles of multi-criteria analysis (MCA) that is capable of combining qualitative and quantitative data into a single analytical framework. One of the study outputs was a computerized software tool that can be used alone or within the framework of globally accepted appraisal models. Although such tools appear to be robust in methodological terms, there are fundamental operational problems, including the choice of the benefits costs indicators and their weights. The current study undertook field testing of the proposed social benefits model and the software tool to recommend the choice of indicators with their corresponding weights based on results from the field. In addition, the study aimed to improve the capability of the Highway Development and Management Model (HDM-4) and social benefits software tools in addressing road investment related social issues.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-01) Bullock, RichardThis review is designed to assist the development community and policy makers in other countries who may be contemplating railway privatization. The report is principally concerned with the results of privatization rather than the processes or detailed concession structures, which have varied from country to country depending on diverse local circumstances. This report is concerned with the results of the African concessions. The report contains three main sections: (i) A summary of the background to railway development in sub-Saharan Africa to the start of the 1990's, together with a list of the railway privatizations and concessions undertaken over the last 10 years and a brief description of the main concessionaires; (ii) A more detailed presentation of the thirteen concessions, particularly the three which have been operating the longest ; (iii) An assessment of the overall results of railway privatization/concessioning.