2040 Strategic Vision for Infrastructure Investment in Latin America

The Latin American Development Bank report highlights the current investment gap in the region and reviews intervention strategies to tackle future challenges and trends

Increased and sustained investment in infrastructure is of paramount importance for economic growth in any region, and nowhere is this truer than in the Latin American region where inconsistent and insufficient investment was noted as the main cause of slower economic growth during the mid-term period 2007-2012. Falling investment in transport infrastructure and logistics has had a knock-on effect on the commercial development of the region as a whole.

The Latin American Development Bank, founded 50 years ago, recently funded an investment analysis study of the region´s intercity land transport sector, focusing specifically on road and rail. Irene de Cubas, CENIT´s Research Engineer for the report explains

“We know there is a direct correlation between a country or region´s GDP and transport infrastructure. In fact, Latin America is an extreme case, having a very limited transport network in relation to land area and population. So this is what we would call an infrastructure gap, in other words the need for investment projects to gradually bring the region in line or on an even footing with other regions such or Europe, North America or Asia Pacific to encourage long term increased economic growth and prosperity as a whole”.

Specifically, the report highlights:

Performance and sustainability indicators and impact of new technologies
Capacity and demand measures to determine the need for future investment
Gap analysis comparing land transport infrastructure to the OECD objective
Overriding trends and challenges in the transport sector
Social and environmental effects
– The impacts of expected technological innovations and the expected medium and long-term effects for Latin America
– The need to establish criteria for selecting those projects that can provide the greatest added value, the focus being to prioritise profitable and sustainable projects

As with all long term strategic investment projects, it´s not just about doing things right, but in fact doing the right thing in the first place.