Public Private Partnerships are already privatising our public water system 13:00 Dec 19 0 comments
Irish Water: Killing off conservation and the real agenda behind water charges 12:03 Jan 18 2 comments
RTÉ Primetime Parrots State Propaganda on Water Charges 19:39 Dec 14 1 comments
Defeating the water charges - Don’t be fooled by the concessions 23:28 Dec 02 0 comments
Water Charge FAQ - your questions answered 01:16 Nov 01 0 commentsmore >>
A bird's eye view of the vineyard
Released Lula in for greatest fight of his life Mon Nov 11, 2019 18:26 | amarynth
The neo-colonial corruption of Christian extremists and bankers in Lebanon (2/2) Fri Nov 08, 2019 17:36 | The Saker
Moveable Feast Cafe 2019/11/08 ? Open Thread Fri Nov 08, 2019 12:30 | Herb Swanson
A blue dot barely visible from New Silk Roads Thu Nov 07, 2019 22:41 | amarynth
Deconstructing Islamophobia Thu Nov 07, 2019 13:29 | The Saker
A Blog About Human Rights
US Holds China To Account For Human Rights Violations Sun Oct 13, 2019 19:12 | Human Rights
UN Human Rights Council Should Address Human Rights Crisis in Cambodia Sat Aug 31, 2019 13:41 | Human Rights
Fijian women still face Human Rights violations Mon Aug 26, 2019 18:49 | Human Rights
Saudi Human Rights Violation Fri Aug 09, 2019 20:41 | Human Rights
China?s LGBT Community Mon Apr 15, 2019 19:19 | Human Rights
For lefties too stubborn to quit
The UK General Election: Brexit Party stands down in 317 Tory seats 17:22 Mon Nov 11, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Discussing unity? 10:22 Mon Nov 11, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
UK General Election poll tracker from the Guardian 09:24 Mon Nov 11, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Spain 09:03 Mon Nov 11, 2019 | WorldbyStorm
Left Archive: Wake Up, Act Now ? Extinction Rebellion, Autumn 2019 05:15 Mon Nov 11, 2019 | leftarchivist
Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting
Some Thoughts on the Brexit Joint Report 11:50 Sat Dec 09, 2017
IRISH COMMONWEALTH: TRADE UNIONS AND CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE 21ST CENTURY 14:06 Sat Nov 18, 2017
Notes for a Book on Money and the Irish State - The Marshall Aid Program 15:10 Sat Apr 02, 2016
The Financial Crisis:What Have We Learnt? 19:58 Sat Aug 29, 2015
Money in 35,000 Words or Less 21:34 Sat Aug 22, 2015
Water Charges and TTIP!
international | bin tax / household tax / water tax | other press Sunday November 16, 2014 01:15 by T
This is a repost of an important article on the Irish Left Review website and goes into detail on the connection between the Water Charges and the upcoming Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) which is currently being concluded in secret by the EU and US.
The origin of the present water charges lies in the EUs Water Framework Directive (2000) which provided for full cost recovery for water use and whose Article 9 states:
‘Member States shall take account of the principle of recovery of the costs of water services …’
It also required Member States to have in place water-pricing policies by 2010. The Directive was transposed into Irish Law in 2003.
So, the origins of these punitive charges, this time around, are the Water Framework Directive which seeks to commodify water provision through the establishment of the principle of recovery of the costs of water services. The EU took advantage of the ‘bailout’ to make it a condition of the ‘loans’. This will open the way for the sale of Irish Water either in whole or in part, ostensibly to complete the single market or to promote competition ‘in the interests of the consumer’. This is just one reason why there is such resistance to a constitutional referendum to permanently retain Irish Water in public ownership – the other is TTIP.
The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), is currently being concluded in secret by the EU and US. Both sides have made clear their intention to use TTIP to get access to what is described as “public monopolies;” that is, public utilities including water. These services would then be vulnerable to greater outsourcing and private tendering for service delivery and eventually, to privatisation.
TTIP would open up public procurement contracts to the private sector, meaning that social, environmental or “public good” goals in public procurement would be removed. A private monopoly can fix its price at an unaffordable level, as Bechtel did in Bolivia, leading to a popular uprising; the termination of the contract and replacement of the government.
It would also make the nationalisation (or renationalisation) of services or resources virtually impossible, as incredibly, corporations would be able to sue for loss of future and expected profits. This is facilitated by the inclusion of an (ISDS) Investor – State Dispute Settlement clause in TTIP.
The TTIP agreement increases the pressure for the privatisation of ‘services of general interest’, such as water services. Foreign suppliers of services of general interest should not be entitled to claim “forgone profits” through ISDS. This provision, in effect would further legalise neo-liberalism as the economic and social framework in Ireland and the EU.
But even if ISDS is removed from TTIP, the main goal remains; to remove regulatory ‘barriers’ which restrict the potential profits to be made by transnational corporations on both sides of the Atlantic. Yet these ‘barriers’ are in reality some of our most prized social standards and environmental regulations, such as labour rights, food safety rules, regulations on the use of toxic chemicals and digital privacy laws. The stakes could not be higher.
Public water provision is only one of the services under threat from TTIP. Both water charges and TTIP must be defeated!