After decades of isolation, Myanmar is welcoming investments and technical expertise from international organisations. Its water and wastewater sector needs to be built up from scratch. Will Myanmar be able to avoid the mistakes made by countries in the region? Continue reading
A look at the utility invoices sent out to consumers in many cities makes it clear why water is an under-valued resource. The unclear language and confusing acronyms do nothing to educate or inform. Some invoices do not even specify whether they use actual readings or estimates. These pieces of paper seem to be designed to negatively impact the consumers’ trust in the water quality and their willingness to pay. Continue reading
Water and sanitation have been recognised as a basic human right at the UN General Assembly last month, with 122 countries voting for it and 41 abstaining. The right is not legally binding, but more like an ideal towards which countries have to work. Continue reading
At the recent World Water Forum in Istanbul, it was good to hear some new topics being discussed such as the energy-water linkage, the need for water-related data and the impact of the financial crisis on the water sector.
But one set of debates that never seem to go away are the ‘Is water a human right?’ debate which leads to the ‘Shouldn’t water be free?’ debate which opens the floodgates for “Should water be managed by the public or private sector?” debate. Continue reading