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Monday, May 17, 2010

Africa's Infrastructure: A Time for Transformation

Africa's Infrastructure: A Time for Transformation: "

May 1, 2010

Nicolas van de Walle

Africa's woeful infrastructure is no secret, but this World Bank report offers an unusually comprehensive analysis of the region's rail and road grid, communications network, transportation sector, power supply, and potable water systems.

It will be the standard empirical source on African infrastructure for the foreseeable future. According to the report, the public infrastructure in most African countries increasingly lags behind those of poor countries in other regions -- in part due to Africa's difficult geography, but largely thanks to governments' and private actors' chronic underspending. For instance, in 1970, Africa's per capita power generating capacity was three times as great as South Asia's; now, it is less than half as great.


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