Do China-Financed Dams in Sub-Saharan Africa Improve the Region’s Social Welfare? A Case Study of the Impacts of Ghana’s Bui Dam

Image: Flickr, Anne Steenstrup-Duch
Image: Flickr, Anne Steenstrup-Duch

Lack of access to electricity in Sub-Saharan Africa is a major impediment to the region’s economic growth.

The scarcity of power generation capacity, transmission, distribution networks, and well-established utility frameworks poses significant challenges to sub-Saharan Africa’s socio-economic development. As of 2015, more than 635 million sub-Saharan Africans still lived without electricity. In recent years, China has become an important source of financing and has contributed significantly to generation and transmission capacity in sub-Saharan Africa’s power sector, especially hydropower. In spite of the large amount of financing that China has poured into Africa, little research has been done regarding what socio[1]economic impacts China-financed dams have brought to local households.

1 Jan 2019