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An appraisal of highway maintenance by contract in developing countries (Inglês)

The introduction of competitive practices in the performance of routine maintenance operations is gaining strength in many countries. In some cases, the move to contracting has been motivated by the rapid growth of maintenance needs, which exceeded available resources; in others, the contracting out of routine maintenance was motivated by the presence of intractable obstacles to the development of effective force account organizations. This paper presents a review of the experience in nine countries with routine maintenance by contract. Those countries cover the whole spectrum of development, and their case studies reveal the advantages and potential pitfalls of contracting for this purpose. The authors conclude that, given a suitable planning and management organization within the contracting authority, and the prevalence of a truly competitive environment, the advantages of contracting can outweigh the disadvantages in terms, inter alia, of actual maintenance work carried out, cost effectiveness, flexibility in the management of resources, and support to the development of the national construction industry.

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