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Overseas Aid: Water

Volume 464: debated on Wednesday 10 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what assistance his Department is providing to aid the development of water operator partnerships; (156342)

(2) what assessment he has made of the potential value of water operator partnerships.

DFID officials have been in discussion with NGOs such as Oxfam, WDM, WaterAid and others for over a year about more effective ways to support public utilities. We recognise that promoting partnerships is an opportunity to help water utilities identify what works, build their capacity and support them to deliver better services to poor people.

In April of this year, DFID funded regional workshops in Asia and Africa. Working with utility managers, these explored the possibilities of establishing regional partnerships—and examined the support they might need. We have also agreed to fund work to share the lessons from public water utilities about what has worked best in individual countries and we will look to see what can be learnt from partnerships between utilities.