Infrastructure

The role of infrastructure in development is many folds. Investment in the sector creates jobs, raises peoples’ income and augments demand that could potentially be a basis for further economic growth. Infrastructure is a means of redistributing national wealth through public utilities. It is also an important capability that serves as a catalyst to structural transformation. Ethiopia has made significant investment in the social and economic infrastructure over the last two decades. This effort benefited the society at large in the form of employment and public utilities. Such investments raised income and augmented national demand. It induced private investment which in turn created jobs and raised income. The cumulative effect was manifested in the form of fast economic growth over more than a decade which had the capacity of slashing poverty by a significant margin. The ratio of the number of citizens below the poverty line at the national level has declined from 38.7 per cent in 2005 to 29.6 per cent in 2011. Government’s

commitment to allocate about 70 per cent of the national budget towards projects related to poverty reduction programs has contributed to the pro-poor nature of the growth. The contribution of such infrastructure to the transformation process is contingent upon the nation’s ability to gear such capabilities towards more vibrant sectors.

As part of the national effort, the Harari People’s Regional State has invested in infrastructure with visible effect on the socio-economic developments of the people of the region. Access to clean water has increased from 40 per cent in 2010 to 88.5 per cent in 2015. Similarly, during the same period, the number of primary level schools in the region increased from 58 to 84 and the number of secondary level schools increased from 8 to 14.

In the health infrastructure, 8 hospitals, 8 health centers, 55 clinics, and 7 health posts have been built. Currently, a referral hospital with the capacity of 900 beds is under construction with outlays from the Federal Government. Upon completion, the hospital will be the largest in the Eastern part of Ethiopia.

The Harari Regional State has also invested in the road infrastructure paving new routes and upgrading the existing ones. The major Addis Ababa - Djibouti railway which passes through the Eastern Ethiopia regions is expected to boost the development efforts of the Harari region. The Dire Dawa International Airport plays indispensible role in facilitating trade and tourism in Harari region.

Endeavors in infrastructural development and in other sectors have helped the Harari region register remarkable economic growth. The economic growth in the region was broad-based and robust enough to slash poverty significantly. Between the years 2005 and 2011, proportion of citizens below the poverty line in the Harari regional state declined from 27 per cent to 11.1 per cent. Current and future efforts in expanding infrastructure are designed to help the process of structural transformation in the region.

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