UPAD hosts roundtable discussion on “Assuring Affordable, Quality, and Accessible Public Services for All”

The Thematic Social Justice Cluster of the Asia – Europe People’s Forum concluded its three-day conference with a roundtable discussion with parliamentarians, academics, and civil society organizations at the Center for Integrative and Development Studies last February 15, 2018.

The roundtable discussion aimed to share with parliamentarians, specifically the Filipino legislators from the senate and congress, the important discussions from the conference on the impacts and alternatives to privatizing essential public services and gather recommendations from parliamentarians on how they can put forward or contribute in the realization of the advocacies of civil society towards affordable, quality, and accessible public services.

The Program on Alternative Development (UPAD) Co-Convenor Dr. Eduardo C. Tadem saw the relevance of hosting the dialogue with European and Asian parliamentarians and academics at UPCIDS, the University’s primary research and policy center that was “[envisioned as a] policy research unit [that harnesses both] the multidisciplinary expertise of the university towards the resolution of the nation’s political problems [and the] expertise of the university on issues of national significance.” Sectoral issues discussed during the first two days of conference were health, water, transport, housing or right to the city, education, and energy.

Ms. Lidy Nacpil, the coordinator of the Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development, moderated the roundtable discussion on “Critical Issues on Public Services” which was divided into three main topics: Privatization, Public Private Partnerships (PPPs), and the common approach and mode used by governments on assuring public services by Professor David Hall, the founding director of Public Services International Research Unit (PSIRU); alternatives to privatization of public services by Ms. Satoko Kishimoto from the Transnational Institute (TNI); and the impact of Free Trade Agreements on public services by Barry Coates, Former MP in New Zealand.