Conflict also disrupts growth. Although many conflic

icts appear to have a religious or ethnic basis, some scholars believe their root cause may be economic, with ethnic divisio

s serving as a way to exclude other groups from access to scarce resources and opportunities. Whatever its so

urce, inequality of opportunity has a highly disruptive effect on governance and hence growth.

But these obstacles are not insurmountable. For one th

ing, developing countries now have huge potential export markets in middle-inc

ome countries, and no longer depend entirely on advanced economies for access to global markets.

Belt and Road can play vital development role

There is also a renewed awareness of the importance of infrastructure in e

nabling growth. In addition to roads, railways and ports, electricity and digital conn

ectivity are crucial. In this regard, the rapid expansion of cellular wireless technology, combined with the install

ation of high-capacity undersea broadband pipes around Africa, represents major prog

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