Infrastructural Development As A Tool For Economics Growth
Infrastructure is conceived all over the world as a sine-qua-non for growth and development of a nation or country. It is an engine for economic development, as well as vehicle for social transformation. Infrastructure is basic physical and organizational structures needed for the operation of a society. In enterprise or the service and facilities necessary for an economy to function. It can be generally defined as the set of interconnected structural element that provide framework supporting an entire structure of development.
Mr. Ifeanyi Igwilo (2012) suggests that in any modern society, infrastructure plays a pivotal role. In determining the overall productivity and development of a country’s economy, as well as the quality of life of it’s citizens. According to him, infrastructure can be defined as an activity that provides society with the services necessary to conduct dearly life and to engage in production activities, William (1974) defined infrastructure as the systematic framework which underpins communities ability to fulfill its mission of providing a base to it citizens to productive and to nurture social equality.
Thus, Infrastructure facilities are the basic amenities needed for the functioning and operation of a society. They includes road, water supply, power supply, drainage, telecommunication, to mention but a few. A comprehension of Infrastructure spans not only these public works facilities but also the operating procedures, management practices, and development policies that interact together with societal demand. To facilitate the transport of people and goods, provision of water for drinking and a variety of other uses, safe disposal of society’s waste products, provision of energy where it is needed, and transmission of information within and between communities.
A regions Infrastructure network, broadly speaking is the very socio-economic climate created by the institutions that serve as conduits of trade and investment. Some of these institutions are public and other private. In that case, their role in context of integrations are transformation, helping to change resources into output or to enhance trade by removing barriers. Therefore, an improvement in regional infrastructure is one of the key factors affecting the long-term growth of a region. Studies have show that Infrastructure can have a significant impact on output, income, employment, international trade and quality of life.
In a regional setting, infrastructure is a combination of two components national and international regional Infrastructure. Regional Infrastructure is seen as one of the major determinants of the economic integration process (Vickerman, 2002; Kuroda, Kawai and Nangia 2007; Veriable 2007; Francis, Munching, and Balaoing 2009). Investment towards improving sector policies, governance and the institutional environment need to be targeted. Improved governance and policies have promote prosperity and stability in participating countries.
A study by Asian Development Bank (ADB), World Bank (WB) Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) ADB-WB-JBIC (2005), for instance, found that lack of Infrastructure sector reform and minimal privatization of existing assets gave little room for competition or independent regulation. According to ADB (2006), varying strengths and weaknesses of regulatory regimes between countries make regional infrastructure projects difficult to co-ordinate and develop. The ADB, in its regional co-operation and integration strategy on cross-border infrastructure, tackled a range of issues including public and private roles in provision, regulation and management.
There have been considerable changes in the delivery of national and international infrastructure service world wide. Jones (2006), for example, has noted that in some Asian countries, infrastructure investment has not had the anticipated long-term impact on the quality and extent of utility and transport services. Privatization and competition have had some success in some countries (World Bank, 2005). There is also evidence to suggest that private provision can improve the quality of services and the extent of provision (Levy, 2007). In Asia, the public sector is involved in regulating and supplying the bulk of national and regional infrastructure. Therefore, there is a strong need for regional public policy. Institutional and software components in regional infrastructure ate just as important as hardware components (Kuroda, Kawai and Nangia 2007). For any hardware infrastructure facility to work well-designed institutional and software support is essential. Hardware infrastructure refers to a modern industrial nation. Software infrastructure refers to all the institutions which are required to maintain the economic, health and cultural/social standards of a country, such as the financial system, the education system, the health-care system the system of government and law enforcement as well as emergency services.
The early emphasis was on the provision of infrastructure hardware components. The approach failed to meet the needs of the poor as it neglect the software component. The truth remains that public provision was the majority source of funding for infrastructure, Estache 2006 estimates that the public sector accounts for 70% the private 20% and aid 10% of funding. However, public investment in infrastructure in developing countries was grossly insufficient to meet human needs and public provision of infrastructure was often inadequate insufficient, and incapable of meeting the needs of the poor.
Some of the basic roles or importance of infrastructural development entails the following:-
- Infrastructure acts as a stimulus to both economic and social development. They provide the necessary foundations on which should economic base is laid.
- It helps to stabilize the urban and rural areas and reduce rural migration to urban centres and other area where such facilities are provided.
- Infrastructure helps to make life easier for people by increasing their standard of living and agricultural productivity. If the government of the day provides necessary infrastructure in various urban and rural areas, this will minimize out emigration.
- Lack of infrastructure leads to stunted growth in the economy. The economy of any society without adequate infrastructural base in more or less left in the state of paralysis.
Finally, providing infrastructural services to meet the need of the present generation without undermining the ability of future generation to meet their own needs. The almost universally quoted definition was produced in 1987 by the world commission on environment and development (WEED). By this definition, emphasis is laid on the social, economic and political context of development away from the traditional concept as development by 1980 world conservation strategy. The infrastructural development fund (IDF) project was initiated in 1985 as collaborative effort between the government of Nigeria and World Bank in response to the direct need to establish a visible mechanism, for financing infrastructure development and assist states to improve their financial management investment planning and urban infrastructure development and assist states to improve their financial management investment planning and urban infrastructure investment planning and development.
- STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS
The existing state of infrastructure development/ provision in Aguata Local Government has remine pitiable, mostly in the area of potable water supply system, roads, drainages, electricity, waste disposal units to mention but a few for many years now, has been faced with the problems of inadequate infrastructural development. These problems are felt more on the aspect of road network and portable water supply.
Investigation reveals that some of the road networks connecting the communities are very poor, thus has led to high cost of transportation within and between these communities. The absence of drainage channel points on various sections of the roads have contributed immensely to the roads problems today. Long presence of water either on or beneath the carriage way and shoulder is the major reason for the collapse of many roads. Other reasons, are dumping of refuse on the road side, drains and manholes which block the drainage channels.
- AIM AND OBJECTIVES
The aim of this study is to improve the infrastructural development in Aguata Local Government Area.
In carrying out this project this will serve as my objectives.
- To identify the institution responsible for the provision of infrastructure in the study area.
- To examine the level of infrastructure development in the study area.
- To find out the factors militating against the development of infrastructure in the study area.
- To highlight the importance of infrastructure development to economic growth in Aguata Local Government Area.
- RESEARCH QUESTIONS
- What institution and agencies are responsible for infrastructure development in the study area?
- What are the level of infrastructure development in the study area?
- What are the factors militating against infrastructure development in Aguata?
- What are the importances of infrastructure development to economic growth in Aguata?
- THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This research is highly relevant in several ways. It has policies implication and academic usefulness. The research findings and recommendations will be useful for government policy formulation on urban infrastructure development as a whole.
Secondly, the research will be a valuable resources and source for students of urban and regional planning, and other related disciplines in school of environmental design and technology practitioners in urban and regional planning and allied professions and future researchers. It will be a guide to researcher who might be interested to study a related literature in urban planning.
- SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The proposed study will be conducted in Aguata Local Government Area, Anambra State. The study will focus on water supply, electricity and roads only. Both male and female in the study area will be interviewed, the study will make recommendations, base on the findings.
- THE STUDY AREA
Aguata Local Government Area is one of the twenty one local government area that makes up Anambra State in Nigeria with its headquarters in Aguata (location of the headquarters office building) part of which falls into the city of Ekwulobia while the other part falls within Aguluezechukwu, Aguata Local Government area is made up of fourteen towns namely; Akpo, Achina, Uga, Igboukwu, Isuofia, Umuchu, Aguluezechukwu, Ezinifite, Ikenga, Amesi, Oraeri, Umuona, Nkpologwu and Ekwulobia. The population of Aguata Local Government Area based on the 2006 national census it as a population of 370,972 people.