Water Privatization In Asuncion Paraguay

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Information about Water Privatization In Asuncion Paraguay

Published on May 13, 2008

Author: WaterPrivatization

Source: slideshare.net

Water Privatization in Asuncion, Paraguay Leah Antil, Natalie Cook, Rich Watts, and Fabiano Miranda de Melo Franco

Location Asuncion, Paraguay Asuncion is the Capital and LARGEST city in Paraguay Population: 1.8 Million people 65% of the population is under 30 years of age, with a 95% literacy rate (the highest in Paraguay)

Asuncion, Paraguay

Asuncion is the Capital and LARGEST city in Paraguay

Population: 1.8 Million people

65% of the population is under 30 years of age, with a 95% literacy rate (the highest in Paraguay)

The Issue: Privatization of Water in the Capital City What is Privatization ? A basic definition for privatization in the water or sanitation sector involves transferring some or all of the assets or operations of public water systems into private hands . This does not necessarily mean the privatization of water resources themselves occurs because water services are seen as such a key public service. Proposals for privatization of them often evoke stronger opposition than for other sectors. Globally, over two-thirds of modern water and sanitation systems are publicly owned and operated.

What is Privatization ?

A basic definition for privatization in the water or sanitation sector involves transferring some or all of the assets or operations of public water systems into private hands .

This does not necessarily mean the privatization of water resources themselves occurs because water services are seen as such a key public service. Proposals for privatization of them often evoke stronger opposition than for other sectors.

Globally, over two-thirds of modern water and sanitation systems are publicly owned and operated.

The Story Please refer to your handouts as we discuss the story of the privatization of water in Asuncion, Paraguay…

Please refer to your handouts

as we discuss the story of the

privatization of water in

Asuncion, Paraguay…

The Positives of Privatization While most countries are committed to increasing access to safe water and thereby reducing child mortality. Water will reach more people in a more efficient manner.

While most countries are committed to increasing access to safe water and thereby reducing child mortality.

Water will reach more people in a more efficient manner.

The Negatives of Privatization As a basic human need, water service should be a responsibility of governments. Transfer of control to a private entity that seeks to maximize profits reduces public accountability and can adversely affect the quality and equity of service. Water privatization can negatively impact low-income and underserved communities by unfair rate increases and poor service to these communities. Water privatization may lead to lower quality service and higher rates. In cases where communities have tried to reclaim their water systems from private entities, poor water quality, unresponsiveness to customer complaints, and rate hikes have been the most frequent complaints.

As a basic human need, water service should be a responsibility of governments. Transfer of control to a private entity that seeks to maximize profits reduces public accountability and can adversely affect the quality and equity of service.

Water privatization can negatively impact low-income and underserved communities by unfair rate increases and poor service to these communities.

Water privatization may lead to lower quality service and higher rates. In cases where communities have tried to reclaim their water systems from private entities, poor water quality, unresponsiveness to customer complaints, and rate hikes have been the most frequent complaints.

The Negatives of Privatization (Cont’d) Private multinational companies don’t have a stake in the community in which they operate. This can have negative effects on small communities when it results in firing city employees and hiring new staff or significantly cutting benefits to long-time employees. Many privatization agreements fail to include adequate public participation. In addition, many of these contracts do not include enough provisions for contract monitoring and accountability.

Private multinational companies don’t have a stake in the community in which they operate. This can have negative effects on small communities when it results in firing city employees and hiring new staff or significantly cutting benefits to long-time employees.

Many privatization agreements fail to include adequate public participation. In addition, many of these contracts do not include enough provisions for contract monitoring and accountability.

The Negatives of Privatization (Cont’d) Many privatization efforts ignore the impact on local ecosystems and downstream water users, and may have long-term negative effects on the environment. Private companies, which stand to make more money for the sale of more water, may neglect the potential for water use efficiency and conservation improvements.

Many privatization efforts ignore the impact on local ecosystems and downstream water users, and may have long-term negative effects on the environment.

Private companies, which stand to make more money for the sale of more water, may neglect the potential for water use efficiency and conservation improvements.

The Antagonists The World Bank IMF (International Monetary Fund) Political Corruption in the Government of Paraguay - ESSAP water company (formerly Corposana )

The World Bank

IMF (International Monetary Fund)

Political Corruption in the Government of Paraguay

- ESSAP water company (formerly Corposana )

The Ethical Debate Do companies have a right to charge people for a commodity essential for survival? What about the poorer people in Asuncion that cannot afford to buy water to cook with, clean and drink? Is it right to start charging for what has previously been free, and how will that affect the quality of life across social classes in Asuncion?

Do companies have a right to charge people for a commodity essential for survival?

What about the poorer people in Asuncion that cannot afford to buy water to cook with, clean and drink?

Is it right to start charging for what has previously been free, and how will that affect the quality of life across social classes in Asuncion?

Suggestions for Improvement 1) Launch investigations and crackdowns on political corruption in the Government of Paraguay 2) Propose to the World Bank and IMF the fallacy of presenting an ultimatum between privatization and aid 3) Work toward setting environmental protection standards for water-based companies that will both protect the environment and improve water efficiency

1) Launch investigations and crackdowns on political corruption in the Government of Paraguay

2) Propose to the World Bank and IMF the fallacy of presenting an ultimatum between privatization and aid

3) Work toward setting environmental protection standards for water-based companies that will both protect the environment and improve water efficiency

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