From Afghanistan to Zambia, PPIAF supports improved delivery of water, wastewater, irrigation, and solid waste services in urban and rural contexts with private participation. Due to the geophysical constraints surrounding water, water and sanitation projects tend to be more local compared to other sectors; in this sense, the water and sanitation sector has an important, direct impact on the health and well-being of communities. At the same time, providers in this sector tend to have natural monopolies, affecting price and who should pay for services. These characteristics introduce complexities around stakeholder management, making it critical to have a sound regulatory framework and to build consensus and capacity among actors within the sector. PPIAF strongly promotes both of these pillars.

In addition to the above challenges, insufficient resources, management inefficiencies, and lack of access to market financing mechanisms severely constrain the expansion of water and sanitation services. However, water and sanitation PPP projects have been increasing in recent years despite the sector having been slow to introduce private participation. Additionally, governments are turning to performance-based contracts as a way to bring in private sector innovation while maintaining public management.

PPIAF assists public utilities in identifying the best options—public or private—to deliver better service. Our Water Toolkit facilitates the design of policies that encourage private sector participation in the sector. In recent years, PPIAF has also led global thought leadership in the use of  Performance-Based Contracts for Non-Revenue Water.

To date, PPIAF has provided over $50 million in assistance to the sector.

Going further, PPIAF’s Subnational Technical Assistance program supports performance improvements of utilities in general, paving the way for access to market-based finance.