Difference between revisions of "The New Economic Market: Water"

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== The New Economic Market: Water ==
== The New Economic Market: Water ==


Almost thirty years ago the discussion about water as an unlasting good started to become a basic problem all over the world. The first world water conference was in 1977 in Mar del Plata in Argentina. Since then water was one of the main topics in political discussions. In the 80ties the aim was to offer worldwide water supply to every one, but the goal could not be fulfilled until today. The UNO (United Nations Organization), UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), UNICEF(United Nations Children's Fund), WHO (World Health Organization), FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)and a certain number of countries focused on the co-operation with each other and the co-operation with private investors to enable the worldwide water supply. The goals were clear, but every organisation had different ideas and methods to reach them. On the international Conference on Water and Environment in Dublin, 1992 four resolutions were made that formed the guideline:
Almost thirty years ago the discussion about water as a restricted good started to become a basic problem all over the world. In the course of globalization that caused the inter linking between countries and economy markets, the watermarked and water as an unlasting resource gained importance. Since the understanding rose that water wound last for ever and environmental organisations made the water shortage and water pollution to their main topic, politicians and ambassadors of countries started to focus on that.
The first world water conference was in 1977 in Mar del Plata in Argentina. Since then water was one of the main topics in political discussions. In the 80ties the aim was to offer worldwide water supply to every one, but the goal could not be fulfilled until today. The UNO (United Nations Organization), UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), UNICEF(United Nations Children's Fund), WHO (World Health Organization), FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) and a certain number of countries focused on the co-operation with each other and the co-operation with private investors to enable the worldwide water supply. The goals were clear. The currency of the water problem made the organisations focus on quick and effective solutions. But every organisation had different ideas and methods to solve this problem and bring far- and long-ranging chnages. On the international Conference on Water and Environment in Dublin, 1992 four resolutions were made that formed the guideline:  


“4 Dublin principles : - Fresh water is a finite and vulnerable resource, essential to sustain life, development and the environment. - Water development and management should be based on a participatory approach, involving users, planners and policy-makers at all levels - Women play a central part in the provision, management and safeguarding of water. - Water has an economic value in all its competing uses and should be recognize as an economic good.” (www.worldwatercouncil.org)
“4 Dublin principles : - Fresh water is a finite and vulnerable resource, essential to sustain life, development and the environment. - Water development and management should be based on a participatory approach, involving users, planners and policy-makers at all levels - Women play a central part in the provision, management and safeguarding of water. - Water has an economic value in all its competing uses and should be recognize as an economic good.” (www.worldwatercouncil.org)


The fourth point made it possible to treat water as an economical good. Until then, it was possible for companies to make money with water. One reason for this decision was the thought that through the treatment of water under economical aspects and under the free market economy conditions, it will rise in quality. If water will be seen as a good, it will follow the rules of supply and demand, and it was hoped, that water would be dispensed equal and more efficient. The idea was that this could solve the water supply problem. For the first time water lost its status as common property and became marketable. The World Bank as one big supporter of water privatisation:
The fourth point made it possible to treat water as an economical good. Until then, it was possible for companies to make money with water. One reason for this decision was the thought that through the treatment of water under economical aspects and under the free market economy conditions, it will rise in quality. If water will be seen as a good, it will follow the rules of supply and demand, and it was hoped, that water would be dispensed equal and more efficient.  
Since then water was not treated as a common property-resource, or common-pool resource  anymore. As water was treated as a common property-resource, water was characterised as a good “whose size or characteristics makes it costly, but not impossible, to exclude potential beneficiaries from obtaining benefits from its use”(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common-pool_resource).
This conference made it possible to treat water as an economic good. That means that the water-market changed. From now on it follows the rules of an economic market, characterised by the rules of supply and demand.
The idea was that this could solve the water supply problem. For the first time water lost its status as common property and became marketable. The World Bank as one big supporter of water privatisation:


The World Bank as the international development bank often pointed out, that the deregulation and privatisation of water supply is the best solution to offer poor people access to important water infrastructure. Support from the World Bank as facilities and guarantees for water projects are often linked to the condition that private investors are participants, known as Public Private Partnership.
The World Bank as the international development bank often pointed out, that the deregulation and privatisation of water supply is the best solution to offer poor people access to important water infrastructure. Support from the World Bank as facilities and guarantees for water projects are often linked to the condition that private investors are participants, known as Public Private Partnership.
In the paper of the Dublin principles it is argued that “water pricing should primarily serve the purpose of financial sustainability through cost recovery”( Hubert Savenije and Pieter van der Zaag, International Water Resources Association). Important to think of is the fact of water prising, a focus should be given to equity considerations through, for example, increasing block tariffs. There is a need of defining a fair and reasonable price, that secures the acquisition for everyone.


== The lack of economic competition ==
== The lack of economic competition ==
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