24 April 2019

Public Private Partnerships for water supply and sanitation: Policy Principles

Written by State Secretariat for Economic Affairs SECO Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation Swiss Re
24 April 2019

Water is fundamental to life and health. By extension it is a prerequisite for realizing other, basic human rights and in the fight against poverty. Innovative partnerships are needed to meet this huge challenge. Concerning such partnerships there are various options; one of them is a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) between the public authorities and the local, national or international private sector. Deciding on the best option should be the result of an informed and transparent local process.

One of the main challenges in introducing PPPs lies in the proper definition of governance structures for all actors: roles and responsibilities must be assigned and regulatory mechanisms must be established from the outset. What is more, a PPP can only be successful if the involvement of civil society is ensured. Not surprisingly these issues are crucial for public utilities as well. Yet, while under public service provision, the relevant policies may be adapted gradually, in a PPP, the “rules of the game” need to be set from the start. Instruments were developed to respond to these challenges. The objective of this initiative is to enable optimal use of PPP as one of the options and contribute to the overall performance improvements of water supply and sanitations services.

Publication Date: 04.2005