[box] A representative of SAVEGREEKWATER will be one of the lecturers in a discussion-debate that will take place on the 11th of December in Paris and which will be followed by a press conference on the next morning. Our representative, together with Gabriella Zanzanaini from Food & Water Europe will inform the French public opinion, which is very sensitive to water services and their social character’s issues, for the situation in Greece and European Commission’s politics. Besides, it is not long ago since Paris took over again the control of the water services from Suez and Veolia back in 2010, creating not only losses of million of euros for the two french multinationals but also an irreversible damage to their image, since their own country rescinded their mutual agreements. [/box]
The lecture – discussion on the 11th of December, with the same speakers, is being organized by the Universite populaire de l’ eau et du developpement durable, at Cinema Le Luxy, Ivry-sur-Seine, 77 Avenue Georges Gosnat, where Ana Dimitrescu’s documentary “ Khaos, Les visages humains de la crise grecque” will be shown. (Here you can find the event’s brochure).
“The European Commission launches the water companies privatization:
Greece is the first country affected”
The organizations Coordination Eau Ile-de-France and Fondation Danielle Mitterrand – France Libertés are organizing a press conference on Wednesday 12th of December at 09.00 am at the France Libertés institute premises in Paris (22, reu de Milan, 75009 Paris) where the invited speakers are Mrs Maria Kanellopoulou, representative of Save Greek Water and Gabriella Zanzanaini, Manager of the European Affairs in the Food and Water Europe.
The European Commission has clearly admitted in a letter addressed to the European Water Movement organizations and activists that they are imposing the water companies privatization as one of the conditionalities of the bailout. As we have already pointed out a few weeks ago, this attitude lacks of the necessary legitimacy.
For this reason, citizen initiatives from all over Europe have decided to act in groups by accusing E.C. for violations of key Articles of the E.U. treaty which provisions neutrality of the EU (1) at issues regarding water companies ownership and management status.
The validity of E.C. decision is being diminished by the fact that it is opposed to the general trend which is prevailing not only in Europe but all over the world. Indeed, thanks to the citizens pressure, the restitution of the water companies to public ownership is the prevailing trend with a culminating activity to be the exemplary referendum in Italy in 2011 in favor of the water net nationalization.
Troika’s rescue plan for Greece provides a long list of public companies and institutes that have to be sold to bidders and in which are included two of the most important municipal (savegreekwater corrector’s note: the companies are s.a. and the state owns the majority of stocks) water companies of Greece : EYATH (Water and Sanitation Company of Thessalonica) and EYDAP (Water and Sanitation Company of the Capital city). These two companies are in great danger of a total privatization really soon.
Save Greek Water Initiative was founded by Greek citizens in July 2012, aiming at informing the public opinion and at offering the chance to the Greek population to express their opinion by signing a petition against the water companies privatizations.
We have to understand and strengthen Greek citizens to this fight so that the opinion that public goods and especially water belong to every single citizen finds its rightful place during this period of crisis and austerity. Water is a source of life and not of profit!
At the Press Conference which will take place in December 12th, Mrs Maria Kanellopoulou will speak for the situation in Greece and the citizens opposition to the imposed privatization. Mrs Gabriella Zanzanaini will present the initiatives of the society groups and activists towards European Commission, which is now obliged to explain its lack of neutrality.
(1) E.U.’s neutrality against public or private water companies ownership and management status is described in article 345 of the TFEU and in Article 171 of the regulation 2006/123/EC regarding each country’s internal market services.