This report presents the results of a research sutdy of the key
relationships between the European Union's development policies, under
the EU's Water Initiative, to provide equitable access of water
services for the poor, and the EU's position to promote foreign private
sector participation in the provision of water services in developing
countries in the context of the GATS. This report has particularly
studied the experience of three developing countries:
Senegal: situated ni teh drough-affected Sahel and one of the countries
in its region to start liberalisation and (re-)privitisation of the
water sector. It was reclassified as Least Developed in 2001.
Mexico: a Latin American country which has established a national water
regime designed to promote private sector participation. The country
provides an example of water-related poverty in low-income areas within
a middle-income country.
South Africa: An example of an economy that combines features of both
an industricl and Least Developed Country. Post-apartheid South Africa
has pursued a progressive and innovative approach to water sector
reforms which seeks to combine private sector participation with a
strong commitment to poverty reduction.
The report proceeds as follows. Section 2 reviews the deficiencies in
the provision of water services in developing countries and Section 3
discusses the driving forces behind these. Section 4 provides an
overview of potential solutions that have been put forward by the
international development community to finance the development of water
service infrastrucutre and ration demand. Section 5 presents arguments
for and against the rpovision of water services by the private sector in
developing countries. Sections 6 and 7 examine the impact of private
sector participation in the water sector and the various methods that
have been used to delegate (and regulate) water service functions to the
private sector. Section 8 discusses the issue of water in the WTO,
focussing on the role of the GATS, its modus operandi and commitments
that have been made so far in the water sector. Section 9 discusses the
results from the country case studies and analyses the extent to which
conserns over the libearlisation of water services in the the context of
the GATS, and doubts asto th econsistency of such liberalisation with
the wider social and developmental objectives in the water sector, are
justified. Section 10 presents some conclusion and policy
Relations between the EC development policies and the ongoing EU position in the WTO/GATS negotiations on the liberalisation of water services. Final report, Overseas Development Institute (ODI), London, UK, ii + 96 pp.
Relations between the EC development policies and the ongoing EU position in the WTO/GATS negotiations on the liberalisation of water services. Final report.