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Global Infrastructure Facility

Learning from Japan: PPPs for infrastructure resilience

Sanae Sasamori's picture
Also available in: Español | 日本語 

Photo: MediaFOTO/PIXTA

In March 2011, the Great East Japan Earthquake struck Japan, unleashing a tsunami that left some 20,000 people dead or missing. Sendai, the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture and a regional economic hub, was heavily affected by the disaster. About 500,000 residents in the city lost access to water, and the city’s primary wastewater treatment plant was completely submerged by the tsunami. Also, the tsunami damaged 325 kilometers of coastal railway assets and flooded about 100 kilometers of national highway in the Tohoku region, leading to the immediate closure of inland transport access to the devastated towns in need of assistance.
Four years later, while the recovery effort from the earthquake and tsunami was still underway, a private consortium signed a 30-year concession to operate Sendai Airport, making it the first state-owned airport in Japan operated by the private sector. This success was welcomed by policymakers and public-private partnership (PPP) practitioners with surprise—how could it be possible for a private operator to make a long-term investment decision in such a disaster-prone region?

Farewell 2017; Hello to More and Better Infrastructure in 2018

Jordan Z. Schwartz's picture
Volatility in financial markets gets wide attention in the public eye. Less noticed is what we in the development world call macroeconomic volatility—faster-than-desired swings in the broad forces which shape an economy. Think investment, government spending, interest rates, foreign trade and the like.

There are three key questions to analyze: how do these forces interact, what is their effect on overall growth, and what policies are best to follow? All this is of more than academic interest: macroeconomic volatility can bring substantial hardships to millions of people

Helping Brazil realize its infrastructure promise

Paul Procee's picture

With Aaron Flaeen and Saurabh Mishra

Many developing countries have successfully made the transition from low-income to middle-income status, thanks to rapid economic growth, but have subsequently got stuck in a middle income trap. A great deal of research has been done on what explains much faster growth in the developing world than in the developed world (Acemoglu et al 2011; Baldwin 2011; Commission on Growth and Development 2008; Rodrik 2013; UNIDO 2011). But little is known about why so few countries succeed in making the transition from middle-income to high-income status (The Economist, 2013). This is a worrying trend and an issue of major concern, especially because the majority of poor people now live not in low-income but in middle-income countries (Chandy and Gertz, 2011; Sumner and Kanbur, 2011). So what is a middle income trap? What should policy makers do?

We have examined these questions in the context of Malaysia, whose structural transformation from low to middle income has made it one of the most prominent manufacturing exporters’ in the world. However, in a competitive global economy, like many other middle-income economies, it is sandwiched between low-wage economies on one side and more innovative advanced economies on the other.

The Global Infrastructure Facility: What is it really and what have we been doing?

Towfiqua Hoque's picture
A new study finds that child marriage could cost developing countries trillions of dollars by 2030, with the largest economic cost coming from its impact on fertility and population growth.

Globally, more than 700 million women alive today married before the age of 18. Each year, 15 million additional girls are married as children, the vast majority of them in developing countries. Child marriage is widely considered a violation of human rights, and it is also a major impediment to gender equality. It profoundly affects the opportunities not only of child brides, but also of their children. And, as a study we issued this week concludes, it has significant economic implications as well.

As iron sharpens iron

Jeff Delmon's picture
One of the characteristics of the Finnish education system has been to provide equal opportunities for all. However, according to the latest PISA results, the socio-economic status of the students seems to also be playing a role in Finland. (Photo: Z. Mrdja/World Bank)

Finland’s success in PISA ― a worldwide study by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) of 15-year-old students’ aptitudes in mathematics, science, and reading ― was a surprise to Finns. In 2006, it was the best performing country. Even though the results have declined, Finland still ranks among the top countries.

Three ways to manage construction risk to support infrastructure investment

Eric Dean Cook's picture
Data shows that huge swaths of populations in developing countries are not learning to read. Scaling up early reading interventions will be a first step toward addressing these high illiteracy rates.
Data shows that huge swaths of populations in developing countries are not learning to read. Scaling up early reading interventions will be a first step toward addressing these high illiteracy rates. (Photo: Liang Qiang / World Bank)

It is estimated that more than 250 million school children throughout the world cannot read. This is unfortunate because literacy has enormous benefits – both for the individual and society. Higher literacy rates are associated with healthier populations, less crime, greater economic growth, and higher employment rates. For a person, literacy is a foundational skill required to acquire advanced skills. These, in turn, confer higher wages and more employment across labor markets .

PPP contract clauses unveiled: the World Bank’s 2017 Guidance on PPP Contractual Provisions

Christina Paul's picture

Жертвы преступлений относятся к числу наиболее уязвимых групп, которым требуются государственные услуги: от базовой информации до приютов, горячих линий, медицинских и психологических служб, юридической помощи и т.д. Тем не менее, служб поддержки зачастую бывает недостаточно или же они могут вообще отсутствовать, в результате чего жертвы чувствуют себя беззащитными и брошенными органами правосудия. Это создает ряд издержек в экономической и социальной областях, которых следует избегать.
Есть ли у нас возможность предотвратить эти негативные побочные последствия?

Why addressing FX risk could hold the key to infrastructure investment

Julie Monaco's picture
Во время недавнего посещения  города Чартак в Наманганской области Узбекистана я была поражена, увидев красоты этих мест. Здесь, в прямом и переносном смысле, у меня открылось второе дыхание. Этот небольшой город в Ферганской долине, расположенный на высоте 650 метров над уровнем моря среди зеленых  лугов и скалистых гор, богат чистейшим воздухом и кристальной минеральной водой.

Устойчивый туризм может стать важным экономическим решением для многих горных общин Узбекистана, способствуя трудоустройству местной молодежи. Эта идея приобретает большее значение, учитывая, что три четверти населения страны, находящихся за чертой бедности, проживают именно в сельской местности. 


Ukraine: How international partnerships are contributing to the development of transportation infrastructure

Yuriy Husyev's picture

Reina vive con sus tres hijos y su hermano en una de las decenas de colinas de Tegucigalpa. En su casa el agua llega solo algunos días y hay escasez de muebles. El trabajo esporádico que tiene en escuelas de la capital no le deja mucho dinero después de comprar la comida para sus hijos. Desde su casa se ven algunos de los principales centros comerciales de la ciudad. En ellos abundan restaurantes y tiendas de moda, a los que Reina no puede ir. Son para otra clase social.
Desafortunadamente, esta imagen no es una excepción en Honduras, el país que -según los datos armonizados del Banco Mundial- tiene los niveles de desigualdad económica más altos de Latinoamérica.
Tampoco es una rareza en Centroamérica, donde la desigualdad, además de ser elevada, es altamente persistente. De hecho, a diferencia de América Latina, que empezó la primera década del siglo con niveles más altos de desigualdad y la terminó con niveles más bajos, en Centroamérica se mantuvo constante. O lo que es lo mismo, el cambio neto en el coeficiente de Gini (un concepto estadístico usado para medir la desigualdad económica) fue casi cero.

Traffic Risk in PPPs, Part II: Bias in traffic forecasts—dealing with the darker side of PPPs

Matt Bull's picture
Tim Cordell,

We know that the justice system dampens the business climate in many of the countries where we work. In Bank reports, national strategies, and in common parlance, we lament that poorly performing courts delay business activity, undermine predictability, increase risks and constrain private sector growth. Going further, we conclude that weak justice systems disproportionately hamper micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) because they have less buffer to absorb these problems - which can become make-or-break for their businesses.

So that’s the ‘what’ but, precisely, how, do courts impact businesses?