Infrastructure And Growth In Africa [book]

Cesar Calderon
2009 Policy Research Working Papers  
The goal of the paper is to provide a comprehensive assessment of the impact of infrastructure development on growth in African countries. Based on econometric estimates for a sample of 136 countries from 1960-2005, the authors evaluate the impact on per capita growth of faster accumulation of infrastructure stocks and of enhancement in the quality of infrastructure services for 39 African countries in three key infrastructure sectors: telecommunications, electricity, and roads. Using an
more » ... tric technique suitable for dynamic panel data models and likely endogenous regressors, the authors find that infrastructure stocks and service quality boost economic growth. The growth payoff of reaching the infrastructure development of the African leader (Mauritius) is 1.1 percent of GDP per year in North Africa and 2.3 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa, with most of the contribution coming from more, rather than better, infrastructure. This paper-a product of the African Sustainable Development Front Office, Africa Region-is part of a larger effort in the region to gauge the status of public expenditure, investment needs, financing sources, and sector performance in the main infrastructure sectors for 24 African focus countries, including energy, information and communication technologies, irrigation, transport, and water and sanitation. Policy Research Working Papers are also posted on the Web at http://econ. The author may be contacted at Across Africa, infrastructure contributed 99 basis points to per capita economic growth, versus 68 points for other structural policies. Most of the contribution came from increases in stocks (89 basis points), versus quality improvements (10 basis points). The findings show that growth is positively affected by the volume of infrastructure stocks and the quality of infrastructure services; simulations show that our empirical findings are significant statistically and economically. Identifying areas of opportunity to generate productivity growth, the authors find that African countries are likely to gain more from larger stocks of infrastructure than from enhancements in the quality of existing infrastructure. The payoffs are largest for telephone density, electricity-generating capacity, roadnetwork length, and road quality.
doi:10.1596/1813-9450-4914 fatcat:a4kjypvqrzh3timbwzepdw3xia