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The Chad-Cameroon Pipeline Project--Assessing the World Bank's Failed Experiment to Direct Oil Revenues towards the Poor


  • Clausen Fabian

    (Kammergericht Berlin)

  • Attaran Amir

    (University of Ottawa)


The World Bank's engagement with projects involving extractive industries has not proven particularly successful. Especially in Sub-Saharan Africa, it has actually often made matters worse. Borrower countries' economies failed to grow, and corruption increased; the poor did not benefit from the revenues that were generated. This paper assesses the complex legal and institutional framework of the World Bank project that many hoped would change this bleak record: in the highly publicized and controversial Chad-Cameroon Pipeline Project, the Bank catalyzed the largest private investment in the history of Sub-Saharan Africa. This model project featured new and untested contractual, statutory, institutional and fiscal mechanisms which were intended to make Chad's oil revenues transparent and compel the Government of Chad—one of the world's poorest—to expend its oil revenues on areas consistent with the project's agreed poverty reduction objective, such as education and health.

Suggested Citation

  • Clausen Fabian & Attaran Amir, 2011. "The Chad-Cameroon Pipeline Project--Assessing the World Bank's Failed Experiment to Direct Oil Revenues towards the Poor," The Law and Development Review, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 32-65, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:lawdev:v:4:y:2011:i:1:n:2

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