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Public infrastructure and growth : new channels and policy implications

  • Agenor, Pierre-Richard
  • Moreno-Dodson, Blanca

This paper provides an overview of the various channels through which public infrastructure may affect growth. In addition to the conventional productivity, complementarity, and crowding-out effects typically emphasized in the literature, the impact of infrastructure on investment adjustment costs, the durability of private capital, and the production of health and education services are also highlighted. Effects on health and education are well documented in a number of microeconomic studies, but macroeconomists have only recently begun to study their implications for growth. Links between health, infrastructure, and growth are illustrated in an endogenous growth model with transitional dynamics, and the optimal allocation of public expenditure is discussed. The concluding section draws implications of the analysis for the design of strategies aimed at promoting growth and reducing poverty.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4064.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2006
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:4064
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