Natural resources 'could boost Africa's infrastructure development'

30 June 2011

The natural resources found in Africa could help the continent continue to develop and improve its infrastructure.

According to the World Bank's Shantayanan Devarajan and Marcelo Giugale, the commodity boom in Africa may provide cause for change.

The pair stated that as the cost of natural reserves is currently high, transferring resource dividends to citizens could reduce the risk of corruption and currency appreciation by enabling residents to directly benefit from Africa's energy stores.

They said: "If you know you are getting a portion of the oil revenues, you will surely be interested in […] what the government does with its share."

It was added that if people had a stake in their nation's energy resources, this could help the economy and supporting infrastructure develop as it buys time for the "slow-but-necessary construction of better governance institutions".

Their comments come as the Natural Resource Charter holds a workshop at the University of Oxford today (June 30th) to promote the group's aims to encourage nations to capitalise on their energy reserves by converting them into a productive economy.

Categories: General, Energy

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