Sunday, September 26, 2004

UK accused of using aid to promote privatisation.
Aid agency report says programme has led to increased poverty, while bringing in huge sums for private-sector consultants. The Guardian
"There is a solid body of evidence which shows that privatisation of public services increases poverty in developing countries," said John Hilary, director of campaigns and policy at War on Want and the author of the report, Profiting from Poverty. [break]

-In Kyrgyzstan, Arthur Andersen acted as advisers and the electricity prices were increased to make the state company more attractive to potential foreign buyers. This led to more than half of the residents of the capital, Bishkek, being unable to pay their bills.

· In China, PricewaterhouseCoopers led a consortium of advisers to the Chengdu city government on its water supply service, the contract for which was eventually awarded to the French water giant Vivendi, and the Japanese Marubeni Corporation for $106.5m. PricewaterhouseCoopers then acted as adviser to Vivendi and Marubeni in their bid for a water treatment plant in Beijing.

· In Malaysia, PricewaterhouseCoopers advised the government on privatisation of the sewerage system, completed in 1993. After complaints over rising charges and falling services, the government took the system back into public ownership in 2001

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