Sao Paulo govt to hire World Bank to study privatizing water utility
By Rodrigo Viga Gaier
RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Sao Paulo’s state government will hire the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) in the next few days for studies on the possible privatization of state water utility Sabesp, Governor Tarcisio de Freitas said on Friday.
“The privatization of Sabesp is a very complex matter,” Tarcisio told Reuters after attending an event in Rio de Janeiro.
Freitas said utility would only be privatized “if we reach the conclusion that we are going to increase efficiency, have upsides, reduce tariffs.”
“I think that all these objectives are possible and I understand that studies will show this,” he said.
Freitas said the privatization would take place in 2024 and be similar to that of Eletrobras in 2022, when the federal government diluted its controlling stake in a share offering.
“I believe it is an operation for next year,” Freitas said.
The board of directors of Sao Paulo’s state privatization program had earlier this week authorized the body to commission studies on Sabesp’s possible privatization.
(Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)