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Regulation of the urban water supply sector in the Lao PDR

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conference contribution
posted on 2018-02-12, 15:08 authored by Noupheuak Virabouth, Keith Burwell
Urban water supply in the Lao PDR was initially provided through a single national utility. This was decentralised in 1999 into 18 provincial utilities and the creation of the Water Supply Authority (WASA) as the sector regulator. Initially, the concepts of regulation were not fully understood and extensive consulting support was necessary, provided by Interconsult International (Norway), funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development (NORAD). Although slow to get started, WASA has developed into an effective regulatory institution employing comparative competition, especially the publication of the WASA Annual Water Sector Performance Reports, as its primary driver for improved performance. Tariff determinations, the single most important function of WASA, required the development of other regulatory tools such as a Tariff Policy, Regulatory Accounting Guidelines and Tariff Determination Methodologies. Although WASA is a regional leader in water supply regulation it will still continue to develop its expertise to ensure a sustainable and affordable water supply for all.



  • Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering

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  • Water, Engineering and Development Centre (WEDC)

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VIRABOUTH, N. and BURWELL, K., 2004. Regulation of the urban water supply sector in the Lao PDR. IN: Godfrey, S. (ed). People-centred approaches to water and environmental sanitation: Proceedings of the 30th WEDC International Conference, Vientiane, Laos, 25-29 October 2004, pp. 325-328.


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