Authors: C Schachtebeck and J M Mbuya

Keyword: road infrastructure

SDG: SDG9

Agenda 2063: A1, A2

Poverty remains a critical challenge in developing economies, as presented in the Sustainable Development Goals. The South African government, in particular, has undertaken a number of initiatives to alleviate poverty. However, a symbiotic relationship can be created when infrastructure development and poverty alleviation are considered in unison. A clear distinction needs to be drawn between urban and rural road transport infrastructure development and the associated benefits for these differing contexts. This study investigates the potential benefit that road transport infrastructure development has for poverty alleviation. The study was qualitative in nature and made extensive use of secondary sources, particularly focused on research from developing economies. Furthermore, an inductive research approach was followed. The contribution of the research is a theoretical overview of the potential benefits road infrastructure development has on prevailing and future poverty levels, from an emerging economies lens. Results indicate a strong positive relationship between road infrastructure development and poverty alleviation. Both direct and indirect poverty-related benefits can be associated with this type of investment. In particular, the investment does not only result in the creation of job opportunities, but also has associated effects on standards of living, market accessibility, community development and local growth rates.