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Infrastructure and economic growth in Egypt
Author:Loayza, Norman V.; Odawara, Rei; Collection Title:Public expenditure review (PER)Policy Research working paper ; no. WPS 5177
Country:Egypt, Arab Republic of; Date Stored:2010/01/13
Document Date:2010/01/01Document Type:Policy Research Working Paper
SubTopics:Transport Economics Policy & Planning; Non Bank Financial Institutions; Economic Theory & Research; Debt Markets; Public Sector EconomicsLanguage:English
Major Sector:Education; Public Administration, Law, and Justice; Transportation; Water, sanitation and flood protectionRel. Proj ID:EG-Egypt - Programmatic Per -- -- P113136;
Region:Middle East and North AfricaReport Number:WPS5177
Sub Sectors:General water, sanitation and flood protection sector; General education sector; General public administration sector; General transportation sectorVolume No:1 of 1

Summary: In the past half a century, Egypt has experienced remarkable progress in the provision of infrastructure in all areas, including transportation, telecommunication, power generation, and water and sanitation. Judging from an international perspective, Egypt has achieved an infrastructure status that closely corresponds to what could be expected given its national income level. The present infrastructure status is the result of decades of purposeful investment. In the past 15 years, however, a worrisome trend has emerged: Infrastructure investment has suffered a substantial decline, which may be at odds with the country’s goals of raising economic growth. Improving infrastructure in Egypt would require a combination of larger infrastructure expenditures and more efficient investment. The analysis provided in this paper suggests that an increase in infrastructure expenditures from 5 to 6 percent of gross domestic product would raise the annual per capita growth rate of gross domestic product by about 0.5 percentage points in a decade’s time and 1 percentage point by the third decade. If the increase in infrastructure investment did not imply a heavier government burden (for instance, by cutting down on inefficient expenditures), the corresponding increase in growth of per capita gross domestic product would be substantially larger, in fact twice as large by the end of the first decade. This highlights the importance of considering renewed infrastructure investment in the larger context of public sector reform.

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