STRENGTHEN Publication Series

Review of impacts on roads sector investments on employment

Working Paper No. 2

This series of project publications aims to capture the tools, methods, and processes developed under the EC and ILO joint project entitled “Strengthening the Impact on Employment of Sector and Trade Policies", as well as the findings from implementing these in the ten partner countries.

Roads are normally one of the most important components of the physical infrastructure required to facilitate economic activities, improve access to essential amenities and promote greater social and economic cohesion. Most developing countries, principally low-income countries (LICs) and lower middle-income countries (LMICs) in the World Bank classification, suffer from inadequate roads both in quality and quantity. Hence, investment in roads is essential for supporting the development process and improving livelihoods through more and better employment. However, improving and preserving roads is a necessary but not sufficient condition for economic development because the impact will depend on complementary conditions, for example, the productive potential and competitiveness of transport services. The term ‘expenditure’ is more appropriate than ‘investment’ in that it encompasses new construction, upgrading, rehabilitation and the maintenance of roads as elements in the management of road assets.