Recalibrating Afghanistan’s private water market

Published October 26th, 2017

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has sent out a request for information ahead of a prospective five-year contract aimed at increasing access to urban water and sanitation services in six cities in Afghanistan.

The cities – which include Kabul, Jalalabad and Kandahar – are growing rapidly, owing to a high birth rate and rural-urban migration, and yet only 21% of the country’s urban residents have a piped water connection in the home. The remainder rely on shallow wells, trucked water, or private suppliers, who furnish water either via tanker or through bespoke networks erected to supply new townships.

Furthermore, as the trend moves from dry sanitation to water-based systems, the need for centralised wastewater management solutions in urban centres has become increasingly urgent.

Despite reforms, there is still no independent sector regulator, and technical capacity at the institutional level remains low.

Responses are due in to USAID by 6th November.