Publication: The Private Sector in Water and Sanitation : How to Get Started
Brook Cowen, Penelope J.
The more risk and responsibility a government hands over to the private sector in water and sanitation, the more powerful the incentives for better performance-but also the more demands on the government in commitment and preparation. So a government about to enter into a long partnership for a water concession or build-operate-transfer arrangement - typically for twenty-five to thirty years - needs to be sure that it does not overlook details that will later land it in messy renegotiations. A lease is less demanding, but offers smaller gains and will not fix such problems as chronic under-investment. It will, however, give the government time to prepare a longer-term option. In this Note, based on toolkits recently published by the World Bank, the author sets out the range of options for involving the private sector in water and sanitation and reviews the lessons on what can make or break a private participation process.
“Brook Cowen, Penelope J.. 1997. The Private Sector in Water and Sanitation : How to Get Started. Viewpoint. © World Bank, Washington, DC. http://openknowledge.worldbank.org/entities/publication/df99f73e-41f0-5445-b3b6-45b3bd29d177 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”
Other publications in this report series
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PublicationPrimary Care for the Poor: The Potential of Micro-Health Markets to Improve Care( 2015-01)Much of the primary curative care provided to the poor by the private sector occurs not at large hospitals but at small, single-person clinics. While such micro-health providers increase access, questions persist about quality. Some have argued that the micro-health sector needs to be better regulated. This note cites recent studies in arguing that the micro-health sector needs to be better understood. A more evidence based approach may enable the World Bank Group to better target investments and interventions and help these providers fulfill an important role serving the poor. The following recommendations are made at the conclusion of this paper: (1) Effort, rather than hardware or training, may count the most. (2) Scaling up interventions to improve quality requires understanding and addressing market failures. (3) Changing the way impacts are measured will lead to smarter investments.
PublicationSmall Business Tax Regimes(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-02)Simplified tax regimes for micro and small enterprises in developing countries are intended to facilitate voluntary tax compliance. However, survey evidence suggests that small business taxation based on simplified bookkeeping or turnover is sometimes perceived as too complex for microenterprises in countries with high illiteracy levels. Very simple fixed tax regimes not requiring any books or records tend to be overly popular but prone to abuse. System reforms will require more precise tailoring of the simplified regimes to their target beneficiaries, coupled with strong compliance management to detect and deter abuse. The overall objective of simplified taxation for micro and small enterprises (MSEs) in developing countries is generally to facilitate voluntary tax compliance and remove obstacles in moving toward business formalization and growth.
PublicationCompetition and Poverty(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-04)A literature review shows competition policy reforms can deliver benefits for the poorest households and improve income distribution. A lack of competition in food markets hurts the poorest households the most. Competition in input markets and between buyers helps farmers and small businesses. And more competitive markets bolster job growth over the longer term. More research is needed, however, to better understand the impact of competition reforms and antitrust enforcement on poverty and shared prosperity.