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Debt Relief, Water, and Education in Africa.

Congress: 2008
Harrabi Sana & Bousri Lobna Research Department African Development Bank Postal address: 1B3, EPI-C, Banque Africaine de Développement, Angle de l’Avenue du Ghana et des rues de Coubertin, Hédi Nouira -BP 323- 1002 Tunis Belvedere, TUNISIA El

Keyword(s): Debt relief, Africa, Access to water, Education
AbstractThe Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) and Multilateral Debt Relief (MDR) Initiatives have been set up to provide exceptional assistance to countries suffering form overlapping and unsustainable debt to reduce their external debt, and thus, create fiscal space for social sectors. These initiatives have been seen as key pillar towards the Achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and better social service delivery in less developed and poor countries. Up to date, 33 African countries have been identified as HIPCs, among them 17 reached the completion point. This paper explores empirically both direct effects of Debt relief on education and its indirect effects through improving access to water and sanitation services (WSS) for a sample of 50 African countries. We examine the effects of debt relief equally at the general, rural, and urban level to see to which extend debt relief is affecting rural areas versus urban areas. We use simultaneous equation model with non overlapping data for the period spanning from 1980 to 2004. The expected results of this paper are: i) debt relief has positive effect on access to WSS, ii) access to WSS improves noticeably the ratio of school enrollment ratio, mainly for girls, iii) debt relief affects positively the school attendance ratio, iiii) the positive results of debt relief are basically associated with improved better institutional quality, iiiii) and finally, that the urban areas are benefiting more than rural areas from positive effects of debt relief.
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