Challenges of infrastructure procurement in emerging economies and implications for economic development: a case study of Ghana.
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ANKRAH, N., MANTE, J. and NDEKUGRI, I. 2015. Challenges of infrastructure procurement in emerging economies and implications for economic development: a case study of Ghana. In Abdulai, R.T., Obeng-Odoom, F., Ochieng, E. and Maliene, V. (eds.) Real estate, construction and economic development in emerging market economies. Oxon: Routledge, chapter 9, pages 174-201. Available from: https://www.routledge.com/Real-Estate-Construction-and-Economic-Development-in-Emerging-Market-Economies/Abdulai-Obeng-Odoom-Ochieng-Maliene/p/book/9780415747899
Infrastructure comprises the physical facilities, institutions and organisational structures or the social and economic foundations for the operation of a society (UNCTAD, 2008). The World Bank (1994) defines infrastructure in physical and economic terms as public utilities (power, telecommunications, piped water supply, sanitation and sewerage, solid waste collection and disposal and piped gas), public works (roads and major dam and canal works for irrigation and drainage) and transport facilities (urban and inter-urban railways, urban transport, ports and waterways, and airports). Whilst the 'public' tag may no longer be relevant in the light of widespread private sector participation and ownership, one can agree with the examples of infrastructure projects cited in the definition above. UNCTAD (2008) provides a similar list with a caveat that this is changing with the growth of information communication technology (ICT). Many authors such as Prud-homme (2004) and Kessides (1993) also define infrastructure projects in similar terms as the World Bank report. In Ghana, infrastructure has been defined to include 'immovable capital such as, roads, power plants, water delivery systems, sewerage treatment plants, telecommunication and transport facilities, electrification, hospitals and schools' (World Bank, 1997, p.2). All these facilities share common characteristics (UNCTAD, 2008). Firstly, they are capital-intensive. They are 'formidable undertakings' (p.88) involving huge financial outlay. Secondly, they often involve physical networks of strategic importance. Thirdly, they are also major determinants of the competitiveness of an economy; good infrastructure can play a major role in the decision of an investor to set up in a particular economy. Fourthly, in many societies, services associated with infrastructure are thorny social and political issues and, thus, subject to public interventions. Finally, infrastructure projects are relevant to economic development and global integration.