This research was undertaken on behalf of the EAP (Environmental Action Programme for Central and Eastern Europe) Task Force and examined reform activities in the water sector. The clients were the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and DANCEE. The OECD acted as the Secretariat of the Task Force and the study was funded by DANCEE.
The research identified successful reforms and activities in the Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC), and suggested how these reforms may be transferred to the New Independent States (NIS).
The Central and Eastern European countries within the project were Estonia, the Czech Republic and Poland. The benchmarking research was undertaken locally in the CEEC countries by: Booz-Allen Hamilton, Poland; Brno University of Technology, Czech Republic; and Eesti Veevark Consultants, Estonia, together with WRc, UK.
The project has:
- Documented water sector reforms in the CEEC since independence. These include changes such as: transfer of responsibilities from state to municipalities; legal changes; sector framework (responsibilities of organisations within the sector); sector regulation; privatisation initiatives; technical assistance and capital support from international funding; relationships between the utilities and their owners (e.g. changing tariffs and how service quality is controlled).
- Identified which of the reforms have been successful in increasing the quality of service to the consumers and the organisation efficiency.
The research has enabled water sector managers and professionals in the NIS to improve the service provided to their customers, and to increase the efficiency of their utilities, through learning from the reform experience of the CEEC.