White Paper: The Global Infrastructure Boom of 2009-2015 - by Eric J.Gerritsen
In response to the financial crisis of 2008, governments around the world have pledged to spend trillions of dollars over the next few years on what is loosely called “infrastructure” and what amounts to the biggest global build-out of physical economic assets in the history of man. This global infrastructure boom will intensively unfold between 2009 and 2015 and will transform how the world looks, gets educated, moves goods and services, creates wealth, treats the sick, cares for the poor, powers its homes and businesses, and wages war. The amounts of infrastructure money sloshing into the world economy defy imagination: The Obama administration will spend $150 billion of its $787 billion stimulus plan on infrastructure and is expected to add to that; China has pledged $585 billion and stands ready to do more; India is expected to spend $500 billion on infrastructure from now until 2015; the European Union, $252 billion; Japan, $129 billion; Canada, $12 billion; Australia, $4.7 billion, Singapore, $13.8 billion; Germany, $42 billion; and so on.
This great infrastructure boom will create winners and losers. Losers will squander infrastructure spending on corruption and ineptitude. Winners will create powerful new engines of economic growth for generations to come based on new energy, globally competitive health care and strong educations. What then is infrastructure? Broadly speaking, infrastructure refers to all the stuff we use day today but never think about: water from the tap; the road to work; the bridge we cross on the way to work; what happens when we flush the toilet; the energy accessed when we switch on a light; the runways our planes land on.