Keywords: water utilities, non-state providers, NSP, urban poor, poverty, water services, water supply, service provision
Utility and non-state water service provision for the urban poor
Inadequate water service provision to the urban poor remains a serious problem in low-income countries. Utilities lack the resources, obligations or incentives for service expansion and there may be a long delay before water utilities are in a position to extend services. Non-state water providers, including both formal and informal local private providers, as well as civil society institutions, play a large role in provision of services to the urban poor and are increasingly recognised as a potential effective means of service provision to the urban poor. Governments should seek to create a better enabling environment for utilities both to overcome disincentives in service provision to the poor and to seek more effective ways of engagement with the non-state providers.