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Reviving the old demons of water privatisation?

Veolia is weighing in again to market its water privatization business as the solution to Niger and Africa’s urban infrastructure challenges. “Co-creation” is its new mantra. “The leasing contract remains,” according to the company, “one of the ‘new’ most suitable contractual models to the African context.” But experience on the ground paints another picture. In India, “reality was quick to catch up with the French water companies and their Indian partners. There has been strong resistance to water privatization both from civil society and within the bureaucracy. Several dubious financial transactions have been exposed, as well as, more generally, a widespread collusion between political and economic interests. (…) Finally, despite the usual stereotypes about the alleged superiority of private management, Suez and Veolia quickly became entangled in multiple technical and operational difficulties on the ground. They found exactly the same problems that have hindered the development and operation of successful public water services in Indian cities—plus the disadvantages of their own inexperience in India and of the new requirement to siphon out money from the water service for the benefit of their shareholders and (legally or not) of their local partners.”

Source: Dismantle Corporate Power

Jakarta court cancels world's biggest water privatisation after 18-year failure

The Central Jakarta District Court on 24 March annulled the water privatisation contracts of Suez (PT PAM Lyonnaise Jaya – Palyja) and Aetra, finding that the Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) were negligent in fulfilling the human right to water for Jakarta’s residents.

Source: www.world-psi.org

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