Agbar unions ask Veolia board for explanations

The Agbar unions have conveyed to the board of the French multinational Veolia their concerns about the future of the company as a result of the controversy over its investments in Spain and Latin America.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
14 May 2024 Tuesday 10:28
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Agbar unions ask Veolia board for explanations

The Agbar unions have conveyed to the board of the French multinational Veolia their concerns about the future of the company as a result of the controversy over its investments in Spain and Latin America. The Spanish management of Agbar has clashed with Veolia's new strategy which, according to its vision, calls into question the investment commitments in maintenance of the water supply networks, Agbar serves more than 1,100 municipalities, including Barcelona and its metropolitan area. Likewise, the approval by the Barcelona Water Council of the investments necessary to comply with the anti-drought legislation, approved a year ago by the Generalitat, would have generated tension with Veolia executives.

The inter-centre committee of Aigües de Barcelona, ​​the coordinator of the water activity of the entire Agbar group and a third union association, have sent letters to their representative on the Veolia board in recent days. This is a censorship director, who ensures the rights of workers from Suez who were absorbed by Veolia after a public takeover bid (takeover bid) in 20221.

Last Monday, this director delivered those documents to the rest of the Veolia board and asked for explanations about his investment plans through Agbar.

The inter-centre committee of Aigües de Barcelona explains to Veolia managers that workers are “concerned about the negative impact that the new investment policy contained in Veolia's Green up strategic plan may have on our jobs.”

And they warn that "a decrease in Veolia's investments in Spain will jeopardize the long-term sustainability of Aigües de Barcelona and with it the employment of our staff and the quality of our jobs."

Likewise, the letter warns that "in the context of a drought that affects various areas of Spain, with the knowledge that it will not be an exceptional situation and knowing that water stress will be a constant in water management, it is capital to commit to an investment policy that contemplates this complex scenario.”

After reading the document by the censorious director, the CEO of Veolia, Estelle Brachlianoff, assured the rest of the board that the group will maintain its investment commitments in Spain and referred to the investments approved by Aigües de Barceloan and other companies in the cluster.