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The public sector in the Caribbean : issues and reform options

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  • Swaroop, Vinaya

Abstract

The public sector's performance in the Caribbean varies, in reducing poverty and in creating an enabling environment for growth. Barbados and the Bahamas have been the high performers, Guyana and the Dominican Republic have been sluggish, and the other Caribbean countries fall in between. In the Caribbean region, the public sector is now the predominant provider of tertiary education and health services (university education and hospital-based curative care), which mainly benefit the nonpoor. Attempts must be made to recover costs from high-income users and use that revenue to improve the quality and quantity (as appropriate) of basic services. Lessons from experience suggest that most Caribbean countries need to encourage the private sector to participate more in providing infrastructure and need to provide a better regulatory framework. The good news: this is already taking place in many countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Swaroop, Vinaya, 1996. "The public sector in the Caribbean : issues and reform options," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1609, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:1609
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Antonio Estache, 1994. "World Development Report: Infrastructure for Development," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/44144, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    4. Devarajan, Shantayanan & Swaroop, Vinaya & Heng-fu, Zou, 1996. "The composition of public expenditure and economic growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 313-344, April.
    5. Robert J. Barro & Jong-Wha Lee, 1993. "Losers and Winners in Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 4341, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Psacharopoulos, George, 1994. "Returns to investment in education: A global update," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(9), pages 1325-1343, September.
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    8. Behrman, Jere R & Birdsall, Nancy, 1983. "The Quality of Schooling: Quantity Alone is Misleading," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 928-946, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Roland Craigwell & Danielle Bynoe & Shane Lowe, 2012. "The effectiveness of government expenditure on education and health care in the Caribbean," International Journal of Development Issues, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 11(1), pages 4-18, April.
    2. Biswajit Maitra & C.K. Mukhopadhyay, 2012. "Public spending on education, health care and economic growth in selected countries of Asia and the Pacific," Asia-Pacific Development Journal, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), vol. 19(2), pages 19-48, December.

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