Has Private Participation in Water and Sewerage Improved Coverage? Empirical Evidence from Latin America

64 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by George R. G. Clarke

George R. G. Clarke

Texas A&M International University - A.R. Sanchez Jr., School of Business

Katrina Kosec

Stanford University

Scott Wallsten

Technology Policy Institute

Date Written: November 3, 2004

Abstract

Introducing private sector participation (PSP) into the water and sewerage sectors in developing countries is difficult and controversial. Empirical studies on its effects are scant and generally inconclusive. Case studies tend to find improvements in the sector following privatization, but they suffer from selection bias and it is difficult to generalize their results. To explore empirically the effects of PSP on coverage, Clarke, Kosec, and Wallsten assemble a new dataset of connections to water and sewerage services at the city and province level based on household surveys in Argentina, Bolivia, and Brazil. The household surveys, conducted over a number of years, allow them to compile data before and after the introduction of PSP, as well as from similar (control) regions that never privatized at all. Their analysis reveals that, in general, connection rates to piped water and sewerage improved following the introduction of PSP, consistent with the case study literature. The authors also find, however, that connection rates similarly improved in the control regions, suggesting that PSP may not have been responsible for those improvements. On the other hand, connection rates for the poorest households also tended to increase in the regions with PSP and in the control regions, suggesting that - in terms of connections at least - PSP did not harm the poor.

This paper - a product of the Growth and Investment Team, Development Research Group - is part of a larger effort in the group to study the impact of infrastructure reform on poor households.

Suggested Citation

Clarke, George and Kosec, Katrina and Wallsten, Scott, Has Private Participation in Water and Sewerage Improved Coverage? Empirical Evidence from Latin America (November 3, 2004). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 3445. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=625323

George Clarke

Texas A&M International University - A.R. Sanchez Jr., School of Business ( email )

5201 University Blvd.
Laredo, TX 78041-1900
United States

Katrina Kosec

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Scott Wallsten (Contact Author)

Technology Policy Institute ( email )

409 12th St., SW
Ste 700
Washington, DC 20024
United States
2027309441 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.wallsten.net

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