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Jakarta Post

How to finance Asia's infrastructure gap

  • Bambang Susantono

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PREMIUM
Manila   /   Tue, September 25, 2018   /  11:44 am
How to finance Asia's infrastructure gap Vehicles stuck in traffic in Manila on December 14, 2017. The Philippines has passed a tax reform bill at the heart of President Rodrigo Duterte's economic agenda, officials said, raising levies on coal, cars, soft drinks and cosmetic surgeries to rebuild the country's crumbling infrastructure. NOEL CELIS / AFP (AFP/Noel Celis)

Asia’s countries famously need to invest trillions of dollars a year to provide infrastructure required to keep traffic flowing, ports trading, and factories humming. Yet most countries in the region consistently fall short. 

The 2017 Asian Development Bank (ADB) report “Meeting Asia’s Infrastructure Needs” puts the infrastructure tab for 45 developing Asian countries at more than US$1.7 trillion per year. Developing Asia now invests only about $881 billion a year, or slightly more than 50 percent of that. This is the infrastructure gap.

Less well known, however, is that the investment shortfall is frequently not for a lack of funds or technology. The money may be available, particularly in the private sector, but not enough of it is going where Asia needs it. And this is because many developing countries lack the knowledge and c...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.