A progress report “Financing water supply and sanitation in EECCA countries and progress in achieving the water-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)" was prepared for a Environment for Europe Ministerial Conference in Belgrade (Serbia) which took place in October 2007. The paper responds to the request to update the progress report that had been prepared for the Yerevan Ministerial conference.
The paper provides a detailed description of the situation and the main trends in the EECCA urban water sector. It presents aggregated data, country by country, from the World Bank IB-Net database as well as the EAP Task Force Water Utility Performance Indicator Database, both of which mainly focus on urban water systems. The report identifies and measures key indicators for the technical condition of the water supply and sanitation infrastructure, and its impacts on public health and the environment; the state of legal and institutional frameworks; as well as the economic and financial dimensions of sector reforms.
Access to comparative information is considered essential to utilities' development by providing utilities themselves and stakeholders (and also international donors) with the information they need to fulfil their roles. Currently, water utilities in the EECCA do not have standardised data collection systems and standard indicators, largely due to the disruption of regular reporting following the decentralisation process in the early 1990's.
In the framework of the EAP Task Force programme on urban water sector reform, several programmes to promote the usage of performance indicators have been carried out. This activity is based on similar work carried-out in the past and seeks to update and expand an existing EAP Task Force database of water utility performance data, which has been routinely published on the World Bank’s IB-Net website (www.ib-net.org) . The work is carried-out in coordination and synergy with the World Bank. The indicators enable benchmarking of water utilities performance, including the identification of areas where performance could be improved in line with comparable utilities.