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Caroline Visser
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Spending on Transport Infrastructure 1995-2011 – Trends, Policies, Data

1% of GDP: average road and rail infrastructure investment

Latest data released by the ITF show that investment in inland transport infrastructure has remained at around 1% of GDP since 1995 in OECD countries. The new report, Spending on Transport Infrastructure 1995-2011: Trends, Policies, Data, and a related database, finds a relatively constant investment share of GDP in Western European countries, while data for North America show a share below the OECD average. Spending for Central and Eastern European countries grew sharply from around 1% of GDP in 2002, reaching a record high of 2% in 2009. The consistency in figures suggests investment levels may be affected by factors other than real investment needs. “Levels of transport spending may be guided by historical budget levels, institutional budget allocation procedures or budgetary constraints taking into account also needs in the other sectors of the economy”, says ITF economist Jari Kauppila.

This freely available 2013 edition presents aggregate trends in inland transport infrastructure investment and maintenance since 1995.