Infrastructure spending to reach $9 trillion yearly by 2025, Says PwC



A new report from PwC indicates global capital project and infrastructure spending may grow to more than $9 trillion annually by 2025, up from $4 trillion in 2012. The report is titled ‘Capital project and infrastructure spending: Outlook to 2025’.

The report, which Oxfords Economics provided research support, analyses infrastructure spending across 49 of the world’s largest economies which account for 90 percent of global economic output. It covers five industry sectors and forecasts their impact on seven major world economic regions (Western Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Middle East, sub-Saharan Africa, Former Soviet Union and Central and Eastern Europe).

The report shows that that the recovery will be geographically uneven, led mainly by Asia, as spending overall shifts from West to East. The Asia-Pacific market will represent nearly 60 percent of all global infrastructures spending by 2025, driven mainly by China’s growth. Western Europe’s share will shrink to less than 10 percent from twice as much just a few years ago.

Jonathan Cawood, PwC Head of Capital Projects and Infrastructure for Africa, says: “Emerging markets, especially China and other countries in Asia, without the burden of recovering from a financial crisis, will see much faster growth in infrastructure spending.

The pace of urbanisation is also on the increase, with the biggest shift in urbanized populations likely in China, India, Ghana, Nigeria, and the Philippines. Urbanization drives the demand for water, power, transportation and technology infrastructure.

Overall infrastructure spending in the sub-Saharan region is projected to grow by 10 percent a year over the next decade – exceeding $180 billion by 2025 – while maintaining its 2 percent share of the global infrastructure market. Nigeria and South Africa dominate the infrastructure market, but other countries like Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, and Tanzania are also poised for growth.

A substantial increase in spending in the basic manufacturing sector is expected in sub-Saharan Africa. Annual spending in the chemical, metals and fuels sector is forecasted to increase across the seven major African economies to $16 billion, up from about $6 billion in 2012.

Transportation investment is also expected to grow rapidly in South Africa over the coming decade, in particular in the road and rail subsectors. Transportation investment will likely grow to just short of $9 billion by 2025.

Infrastructure spending overall is forecasted to reach around $60 billion by 2025 for South Africa. However, South Africa is likely to lose share of regional spending relative to Nigeria. Nigeria’s better fiscal position and oil revenues will likely enable it to outperform South Africa over the coming decade, says the report.

Overall infrastructure spending in Nigeria is expected to grow from $23 billion in 2013 to $77 billion in 2025. A more investor-friendly environment towards oil investment is also likely to boost this projection further.

The report also shows that spending on utility infrastructure is expected to be significantly stronger in countries that need to upgrade deficient energy, water, and sanitation services and in economies that are rapidly urbanising, such as China, Ghana and Nigeria. The greatest growth of spending for utilities is expected in sub-Saharan Africa where an annual rate of 10.4% between now and 2025 is forecasted.

According to the report the extraction sector, driven by both oil and gas as well as non-oil and gas industries, will grow at an annual rate of 5 percent. Oil and gas extraction activity and infrastructure spending are expected to vary across countries and regions. Extraction spending in sub-Saharan Africa is projected to increase at 8 percent annually over the next decade. The bulk of spending is likely to take place in South Africa and Tanzania.

Demographic shifts will play a major role in determining the type of social infrastructure a country requires. Aging populations, especially in Eastern Europe and Japan, will necessitate more healthcare facilities, while emerging markets are projected to increase investments in both healthcare, as well as education for their young people.

The report shows that the annual growth rate for social infrastructure spending is expected to be particularly strong – about 12 percent in sub-Saharan African where both schools and healthcare facilities will be in high demand.