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Public-Private Partnerships for Infrastructure Development in the Arab Region

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The Arab region has been relatively weak in mobilizing private capital to finance larger infrastructure projects, compared to other parts of the world. The ongoing political transition is constraining the decision-making process and preventing many Governments from committing to such long-term projects as infrastructure development and public-private partnerships (PPPs). In addition, security concerns and political uncertainty have discouraged investors.

This study proposes the establishment of an Arab PPP platform and a proactive involvement of ESCWA to advise Governments on good practice and assist them in identifying domestic projects to be carried out through PPPs; creating regulatory and institutional frameworks for the development of PPPs; building the capacity of the public sector to implement PPP projects; and providing support to cross-border PPP projects.  The study argues that, working together, countries can spread the load of infrastructure development among regional stakeholders.