Toggle Main Menu Toggle Search

Open Access padlockePrints

An examination of the politics of privatization of water and sanitation services in Africa, Europe, and Latin America (1990-2004) – Cases from Kenya and Tanzania

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Esteban CastroORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


This issue of the WATERLAT-GOBACIT Working Papers features two articles presenting edited materials based on the original reports from the case studies carried out in Kenya and Tanzania. These two cases provide examples that have important lessons for current debates on the privatization of essential public services in developing countries, as we currently experience a revival of the water politics implemented worldwide in the 1990s, often with complete disregard for the lessons learned from the recent past. The two Kenyan cases examined in Article 1 provide excellent information about the overall situation of essential water services in the country, and a detailed account of the process of privatization launched by the government in the mid-1990s with the support of international financial institutions and development agencies. In practice, the two cases under consideration in the article, the experiences of Nyeri Town and Tala Town, are mostly cases of commercialization of water supply services. Article 2 discusses the implementation of privatization policies in Tanzania, which took place around the same time than in Kenya, and under relatively similar circumstances, with a strong presence of international financial institutions and development agencies providing support and funding for the required reforms. The article focuses on the privatization of the capital city Dar es Salaam's public utility, DAWASA, which was a very difficult experience and took almost six years to be completed. Differently from the Kenyan cases, where the participating private companies were local, in Dar es Salaam there was a strong presence of multinational water companies.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Castro JE, Nyangeri E, Mashauri D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network Working Papers

Year: 2018

Volume: 5

Issue: 2

Pages: 1-107

Online publication date: 30/06/2018

Acceptance date: 30/04/2018

Date deposited: 20/03/2019

ISSN (print): 2056-4856

ISSN (electronic): 2056-4864

Publisher: WATERLAT-GOBACIT Network


DOI: 10.5072/zenodo.264093

Notes: The full text can be downloaded at:


Altmetrics provided by Altmetric