Recent Economic Development in Infrastructure

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  • Publication
    Burkina Faso's Infrastructure: A Continental Perspective
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2011-05) Briceño-Garmendia, Cecilia; Domínguez-Torres, Carolina
    Infrastructure contributed 1.3 percentage points to Burkina Faso's annual per capita gross domestic product (GDP) growth over the past decade, much of it due to improvements in information and communication technology (ICT). Raising the country's infrastructure endowment to that of the region's middle-income countries (MICs) could boost annual growth by more than 3 percentage points per capita.Today, Burkina Faso's infrastructure indicators look relatively good when compared with other low-income countries (LICs) in Africa. Burkina Faso has made significant progress in developing its infrastructure in recent years. The rapid modernization of the ICT sector, around 60 percent of the population lives within range of a global system for mobile communications (GSM) cell-phone signal. The expansion of safe water and sanitation technologies in urban areas since the late 1990s and the establishment of a system for funding road maintenance (by reducing the cost of road travel) should pay long-term dividends to the economy. The Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (AICD) has gathered and analyzed extensive data on infrastructure across almost all African countries, including Burkina Faso. The results have been presented in reports covering different areas of infrastructure including ICT, irrigation, power, transport and water and sanitation and various policy areas, including investment needs, fiscal costs, and sector performance.
  • Publication
    Financing Public Infrastructure in Sub-Saharan Africa: Patterns and Emerging Issues, Cross-Country Annex
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2009) Briceño-Garmendia, Cecilia; Smits, Karlis; Foster, Vivien
    To be credible, any plan for scaling up infrastructure in Africa must rest on a thorough evaluation of how fiscal resources are allocated and financed. Because in every plausible scenario the public sector retains the lion's share of infrastructure financing, with private participation remaining limited, a central purpose of such an evaluation is to identify where and how fiscal resources can be better used if not increased without jeopardizing macroeconomic and fiscal stability. The stakes are high, because the magnitude of Africa's infrastructure needs carries a commensurate potential for misuse of scarce fiscal resources. The authors analyze recent public expenditure patterns to identify ways to make more fiscal resources available for infrastructure. The authors do this in three ways. First, we quantify the level and composition of public spending on infrastructure so as to match fiscal allocations to the particular characteristics of individual subsectors and to countries' macroeconomic type (low-income fragile, low-income no fragile, oil-exporting, and middle-income). Second, the authors evaluate public budgetary spending for infrastructure against macroeconomic conditions to get a sense of the scope for making additional fiscal resources available based on actual allocation decisions in recent years. And, third, the authors look for ways to make public spending for infrastructure more efficient, so as to better use existing resources. Any exercise of this kind encounters data limitations. First, because it was not feasible to visit all sub national entities, some decentralized infrastructure expenditures probably have been underrepresented, with particular implications for the water sector. Second, it was not always possible to fully identify which items of the budget are financed by donors, and contributions by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to rural infrastructure projects are likely to have been missed completely. Third, it was not always possible to obtain full financial statements for all of the infrastructure special funds that the authors identified. Fourth, accurate recording of annual changes in fixed capital formation (capital expenditure) of State-owned enterprises (SOEs) remains a methodological challenge. Fifth, accurate measurement of existing public infrastructure stock will require further methodological development.