26 October 2022

Can a New Model of Infrastructure Financing Mitigate Credit Rationing in Poorly Governed Countries?


This paper explores why resource-financed infrastructure—whereby developing countries pledge future resource revenues to repay infrastructure loans—mitigates credit rationing in poorly governed countries. Using a novel project-level database, it is found that the loan sizes for resource-financed infrastructure are much larger than those determined by the traditional government infrastructure purchasing model especially in poorly governed countries. The credit rationing model is used to explain these empirical patterns. The traditional government infrastructure purchasing model suffers from two limitations: the borrowing government may steal infrastructure funds, or fail to make a credible commitment to using taxation to repay its sovereign infrastructure loans. The new financing model solves such problems by allocating loans directly from the lender to the contractor minimizing government corruption, and channeling resource revenues into an independent escrow account to repay infrastructure loans. The findings highlight that this new infrastructure financing model can alleviate credit rationing in poorly governed, resource-rich countries.