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This report presents an overall analysis of the current Ethiopian private sector landscape in water and sanitation, with case study chapters specifically addressing urban sanitation, contracting of town water supplies and water well drilling. Key areas identified for improvement include supporting companies to access finance, reducing bureaucracy and improving the performance and capacity of the private sector itself.

TitlePrivate sector landscape for WASH in Ethiopia : bottlenecks and opportunities
Publication TypeResearch Report
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsDefere, E
Paginationvi, 55 p. : 7 fig., 3 tab.
Date Published06/2015
Place PublishedThe Hague, The Netherlands
Publication LanguageEnglish
Keywordsquestionnaires, well drilling

This study, commissioned by UNICEF, assesses the role of the private sector in WASH in Ethiopia, identifies key bottlenecks to improved service delivery by the private sector and provides recommendations for the One WaSH National Program (OWNP).

The bottlenecks include the mandate of the Ethiopian Privatization Agency (EPA), which does not cover utilities or infrastructure. As a consequence, the role of the private sector has been largely limited to study and design services, construction and drilling wells, supply of goods, maintenance services and solid and liquid waste collection and transportation.

The study highlights the growth in commercial private drilling companies where 96 companies are estimated to be working using about 180 drilling rigs. There are almost 1,000 private contractor companies employing 4,000 professional and semi-professional staff in Ethiopia, although not all work in the water sector, and 45 water consulting firms employing about 250 professional staff.

The report makes a number of recommendations, particularly in the areas of well drilling, solid and liquid waste management and in developing private sector water supply in small towns through what is known as Build-Operate-Transfer arrangements. It identifies three key areas for improvement: finance, reducing bureaucratic obstacles and improving the performance and capacity of the private sector itself.


Includes annexes with questionnaires for private sector bottleneck analysis and a list of private drilling companies.

Citation Key79687




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