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The participation of all players : keystone of the entire system

Published January 2012

French water policy is based on consultation with and the participation of stakeholders, whether they are councillors from municipal areas and their groupings, water users, manufacturers, farmers, environmental protection organizations or consumer rights organizations. 
The Comité National de l’Eau (National Water Committee) brings together politicians, users, organizations, heads of basin committees and the State (164 full or replacement members) at national level. It serves as a forum for debate prior to the defi nition of public water policy at national level. 
The basin committees bring together regional, departmental and municipal politicians, user representatives, organizations and the State, with State representatives being in the minority. These committees enable water stakeholders at basin level to debate and consult. 
This concerted form of management for each river basin takes place in the water agencies (with the administrators being designated by the basin committee and the State), and in local water commissions, which bring together local councillors, users, organizations and the State, with the aim of drawing up a blueprint. 
On a local level, in communes with more than 10,000 inhabitants and in inter-communal groups with more than 50,000 inhabitants, the consultative committee for local public services, bringing together user representatives, examines the annual report produced by the mayor or the chairman of the inter-communal union concerning the price and quality of water and sanitation services along with the business report presented by the administrator.