Aquanet Transparant

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Project Benchmarking and Financial and Operational Perfomance Improvement Programme (FOPIP) Romania
Country Romania
Period 2012-2014
Partners PWN and BDO Romania
Client Water Company Raja CS and EBDR

Project of the EU Cohesion Funds Water Framework (TCS ID:31438); value of services 749,835 EUR.
The overall objective of the project is to assist the newly formed Regional Operating Companies in Romania in their transition through improved benchmarking and performance support to ensure that the new water operations are fully integrated and result in the highest level of operating efficiency.
Under its operating program for the environment, the Government of Romania has developed a policy based on regionalisation as the primary means to achieve compliance with EU water and wastewater directives. It is envisaged that through this regionalisation program approximately 40 Regional Operating Companies (ROCs) will be formed through the consolidation of smaller operators into one ROC.
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has recently developed a EUR 200 million framework to provide co-financing to the regionalised water and wastewater sector in Romania alongside European Union ("EU") Cohesion Funds.
The EBRD will assist the stakeholders in the regionalisation process through a benchmarking support TC. The beneficiary of the assignment will be the Romanian Water Association (ARA), a non-government association established in 1995 to support the development of water utilities in Romania.
The main objective has been divided into the following specific objectives:

  • to review the Romanian benchmarking program and to identify where gaps exist with a goal to ensure that benchmarking begins to be used as an effective managerial tool for reviewing the performance of operators in a transparent and non-politicised manner, working closely with the Romanian Water Association and the Ministry of Environment;
  • to develop an appropriate benchmarking methodology; in line with the European Benchmarking Co-operation (EBC);
  • to establish a mechanism to ensure reporting discipline and quality of data as well as further expansion between Romanian benchmarking system and EBC;
  • to ensure that the benchmarking activities of the participating ROCS are in line with best practice and to provide support and advise on how to effectively integrate smaller operators;
  • assist the participating ROCs in their compliance with the financial and operational covenants as stipulated in the EBRD financing agreements;
  • developing an effective mechanism to assist the Intercommunity Development Associations (IDAs) in monitoring the progress of the ROCs under the DMAs, as well as meeting IDAs obligations under the DMAs, inter alia for compliance with the tariff increase schedule;
  • improve the institutional capacity of ARA with respect to monitoring the water sector performance and to support the ROCs in using benchmarking as a management tool;
  • assess opportunities for cross-border water partnerships between water operators in the region;
  • provide training to ARA and ROC.

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