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Japan's first sewer concession opens up untapped potential

French group Veolia in lead for contract to run municipal water treatment plant

A Veolia water treatment facility in Paris.

TOKYO -- The first concession to operate part of Japan's roughly 90 trillion yen ($804 billion) in sewage system assets marks an expansion of opportunities for private investment in infrastructure.

The city of Hamamatsu on Tuesday granted the right of first refusal to a six-member consortium including Veolia, the world's largest water treatment company, on a deal to run a municipal sewage facility. While airport and road concessions already exist in Japan, this is the first for a sewage system -- the nation's biggest infrastructure asset class.

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