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Governments, Pay Your Water Bills!

Non-payment and empty promises are undermining

the human rights to water and sanitation

Research and policy brief

Published in 2020

Developed with End Water Poverty, SWIM (Solutions for Water Integrity and Management) with support from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)


Access to safe water and sanitation are human rights. To serve everyone and realise these rights, water and sanitation service providers must be able to operate and stay financially viable.

However, there is evidence to show that many public institutions do not pay the water bills they receive, or with crippling delays. This is a problem for service providers who count on this revenue.

When governments don’t pay, people do. The burden shifts to those who face increased tariffs and those who are left with poor or no service, who pay with their health, time, and productivity.

Download the policy brief (pdf, EN)

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Research factsheet:

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