The results were released via the WEF’s Global Competitiveness Report for 2017/18, which tracks the performance of approximately 140 countries on 12 pillars of competitiveness, including the quality of road infrastructure development. The development of road infrastructure has been identified as one of the main catalysts for economic development.
Namibia tops the list of African countries in the category of road infrastructure development with an impressive score of 5.2 out of 7, above Ecuador, Bahrain, Qatar and Great Britain which all scored 5.1. The only other African countries to make it to the top 50 list were South Africa and Rwanda with a score of 5.0 each followed by Mauritius with a 4.7 score. The United Arab Emirates took the overall top position with a remarkable 6.5 score.
Since the establishment of Namibia’s Roads Authority in April 2000, the organization has continued to play a vital role in the socio-economic development of Namibia, and in particular the advancement of previously neglected areas in the country. The expansion of the road network has already started to bear fruit as many of the communities in Namibia have access to the main centres of the country.
Also, Namibia’s road network continues to contribute to the economic growth of other SADC countries. Namibia is the only country in SADC that has well-developed and functioning corridors such as the Trans-Caprivi Corridor that links Namibia with Zambia, Zimbabwe and DRC, the Trans-Kalahari Highway that links Botswana and South Africa’s industrial hub (Gauteng) to Namibia and the Trans-Kunene Corridor that links Namibia with Angola and the DRC via the port of Walvis Bay. All these corridors continue to play a pivotal role in the economic development of SADC.
Top 10 African countries with quality roads
- Namibia (score 5.2) world ranking 23
- South Africa (score 5.0) world ranking 29
- Rwanda (score 5.0) world ranking 31
- Cote d’voire (score 4.7) world ranking 42
- Mauritius (score 4.7) world ranking 44
- Morocco (score 4.4) world ranking 55
- Kenya (score 4.2) world ranking 61
- Botswana (score 4.1) world ranking 6
- Cape Verde (score 4.1) world ranking 66
- Senegal (score 4.0) world ranking 71
Other notable countries that did not make it on our list are Gambia, Zambia, Ghana, Tunisia and Uganda.
Sources: WEF competitive report: Road quality index 2016 – 2017