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Trends in Household Coverage of Modern Infrastructure Services in Africa

Listed author(s):
  • Amadou Bassirou Diallo

    (CERDI - Centre d'études et de recherches sur le developpement international - CNRS - Université d'Auvergne - Clermont-Ferrand I)

  • Sudeshna Banerjee
  • Vivien Foster
  • Quentin Wodon

Household surveys have long been used to estimate poverty and inequality trends, as well as trends in education and health indicators, but they have not been used to the same extent to assess trends in the access to or coverage of modern infrastructure services. In this paper, we use Demographic and Health Surveys from a larger sample of sub-Saharan African countries in order to collect comparable information across countries on coverage of piped water, flush toilets, electricity, and landline telephones over time. The results suggest that coverage rates for electricity, flush toilets have improved slightly over the last decade. Coverage of piped water has declined, at the same time as coverage of landline (as well as cellular) telephone has increased rapidly. The decline has been primarily in the urban areas while the infrastructure coverage has either increased or remained stable in rural Africa. For all four services, among the poorest households coverage remains virtually inexistent. If business as usual continues, it would take a very long time to reach universal or widely shared coverage even in countries where coverage has improved. These results point to the need to increase efforts by governments and international community to progressively increase access to modern infrastructure services in Africa.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Post-Print with number hal-00405387.

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Date of creation: 2009
Publication status: Published in Policy Research Working Paper, 2009, The World Bank, March (4880), pp.29
Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-00405387
Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-00405387
Contact details of provider: Web page: https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/

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  1. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:15:y:2007:i:11:p:1-11 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Kristin Komives & Vivien Foster & Jonathan Halpern & Quentin Wodon, 2005. "Water, Electricity, and the Poor : Who Benefits from Utility Subsidies?," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6361, June.
  3. Komives, Kristin & Whittington, Dale & Wu, Xun, 2001. "Infrastructure coverage and the poor : the global perspective," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2551, The World Bank.
  4. Estache, Antonio, 2004. "Emerging infrastructure policy issues in developing countries - a survey of the recent economic literature," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3442, The World Bank.
  5. Quentin Wodon & Amadou Bassirou Diallo, 2007. "Demographic Transition Towards Smaller Household Sizes and Basic Infrastructure Needs in Developing Countries," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 15(11), pages 1-11.
  6. César Calderón & Luis Servén, 2004. "The Effects of Infrastructure Development on Growth and Income Distribution," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 270, Central Bank of Chile.
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