Well Spent

Our work has shown that most countries will find it challenging to meet key public investment needs. A variety of options—raising more revenues, borrowing more, cutting unproductive spending, or getting more private-sector participation—can help to increase infrastructure spending.

But all options have limitations and are insufficient on their own. For example, additional borrowing is hampered by high and increasing debt levels. This book argues that, by addressing inefficiencies and cutting waste in infrastructure spending, governments can get much more out of the public funds they spend. It highlights the urgent need to strengthen infrastructure governance—that is, putting in place the right institutions to plan and implement projects efficiently—to meet priority investment needs.


This book also shows what needs to be done and how best to do it, based in part on the IMF’s comprehensive approach to assessing infrastructure governance and the almost 60 country public investment management assessments (PIMAs) we have carried out so far.

Drawing on the experience of staff from the IMF and the World Bank, as well as OECD colleagues and experts, the book provides a clear roadmap that shows how countries with limited fiscal space can aspire to spend well and address their key infrastructure bottlenecks. Those who deal with infrastructure issues—governments, development partners, private investors, and civil society—will find this book particularly relevant and interesting. Together we can establish the infrastructure needed to bring about a more wealthy, inclusive, and sustainable future.