Population growth (or decline) matters a lot in infrastructure asset management. In conjunction with levels of service delivered, and asset lifecycle management, future growth forms a core analysis tool in the practice of infrastructure asset management.
This blog noted in October 2013 that based on population growth projections 12 countries will be building a lot of infrastructure over the next three decades – India, China, Nigeria, United States, Indonesia, Pakistan, Brazil, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Philippines, Mexico and Congo.
This blog intends to continue to regularly focus on the infrastructure investment, issues and infrastructure management in these 12 countries, as this will be where the questions about effective infrastructure investment and management will be tested.
In October 2013 we also noted that the Philippines Government had increased infrastructure expenditure to 5% of GDP per year, and questioned whether this will be enough in a region where the average infrastructure expenditure is 7.2% of GDP per year.
The Economist Magazine has noted in an article on the Philippines Economy in August 2014, that the surge in infrastructure investment has commenced as noted with highway projects underway around Manila. Fifty-seven (57) projects are planned in the next few years with USD $12.8 billion allocated in next years budget (4% of GDP).
In part because of infrastructure and other investment the Philippines economy is growing strongly, and has lifted from an average of 4.7% growth (2008-12) to 7.2% growth in 2013. World Bank projections are for growth to continue at around 7% for the next few years.
The level of growth being achieved by the Philippines is, after China, the highest growth rate in East Asia, and this despite being hit by one of the largest typhoons ever recorded late last year.
This economic growth will enable the Philippines to get into a virtuous circle of growth, investment (including infrastructure), more growth, more investment.
Managing this economic growth, and associated infrastructure development will remain a challenge for the Philippines for the foreseeable future. It is a good challenge to have, and given the noted resourcefulness in the Philippine national character, one I am sure they will meet well.
As noted in the previous blog post there will be plenty of challenges to overcome on the infrastructure development and management front, but these can be anticipated, and managed to deliver high quality and long lasting infrastructure.