Argentina has renationalised its pension schemes since 2006. The country had developed a national pension scheme from the early 1900s, which expanded from covering 24,000 civil servants in 1904 to provide for 428,000 workers by 1944. In 1994, under pressure from the international financial institutions to reduce government debt, the system was reformed by creating private pension funds to which people had to pay contributions. These funds charged large administration fees, and were very unpopular.
The purpose of Agreement is to establish reciprocal technical collaboration and assistance between “ABSA” and “SEDAM Hyo.” In relation to the water and sewerage services that they provide. “ABSA” and “SEDAM Hyo.” promise to maintain a system of cooperation allowing the coordination of work effected in the interests of both organisations. This collaboration will be effected on a basis of equality and mutual benefit by making the best use of their levels of action, in accordance with the possibilities and experience of both organisations.
After the plans for privatisation in Huancayo were shelved, efforts to develop progressive public water reforms instead intensified. An agreement was first reached between the trade unions SUTAPAH and SOSBA, followed by an agreement between the utilities SEDAM and ABSA. The final step was to ensure agreement on the level of the provincial governments of Huancayo and Buenos Aires. This third level is crucial to ensure that everyone involved assists with implementing the agreement. Getting the workers involved in the management of a public utility helps to ensure permanent planning and care. Participation by the users and civil society helps guarantee an appropriate administration. Luis Mario Padron is Technical Assistant Manager at '5 de Septiembre S.A', the drinking and wastewater operator of the Buenos Aires province, Argentina. '5 de Septiembre S.A.' is the workers-run company operating the provincial utility Aguas Bonaerenses S.A. (ABSA), established by the union of water workers of Buenos Aires, SOSBA.
The Andean city of Huancayo has shown that a strong local movement of citizens and workers can expand the struggle against privatisation into reclaiming public water services. In Huancayo, water movements have developed an innovative public-public partnership (PUP) as an alternative to privatisation. The social movement organisation FREDEAJUN (Frente de Defensa del Agua de la Region Junín) successfully resisted privatisation and, in a participatory bottom-up process, developed an alternative proposal to reform the public utility SEDAM Huancayo S. A. FREDEAJUN and one of its members, the local sector trade union SUTAPAH (Sindicato Único de Trabajadores de Agua Potable de Huancayo) also successfully established a public-public-partnership between SEDAM and ABSA (Aguas Bonaerenses S.A), a union-owned and run public water operator in the state of Buenos Aires, Argentina.