Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Why oppose privatization of water?

Water privatization schemes throughout the world have a track record of skyrocketing prices, water quality problems, deteriorating service and a loss of local control.

Privatization advocates argue – usually without any supporting evidence – that switching from publicly owned and operated utilities to private sector firms will lead to greater economic efficiency, stabilized rates, reduced public debt and improved budgetary management.
In reality, privatization more often than not fulfills none of these promises, and instead creates a number of new problems.

Vulnerable to corruption and operating according to a profit-driven corporate agenda fundamentally incompatible with delivering an essential service, private water companies are failing to provide citizens with safe, affordable water. Private corporations seek to increase profit margins by cutting costs; hence privatization is almost always accompanied by lay-offs.


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