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Water rates to be hiked for 5 years starting this January

Water rates would be hiked starting this January 2023 and would continue for the next five years to pay for the expense of improving water concessionaires' services.

According to Maki Pulido’s “24 Oras” report on Friday, Manila Water customers will have an additional P8.04/m3 charge starting in January, which would be increased until it reaches P20.37 in 2027.

Thus, those who consume 20 cubic meters would pay P425.

Maynilad customers, on the other hand, would have an additional P3.29/m3 charge starting in January until it increases to P13.69 by 2027.

The cost of 20 cubic meters would reach P509.11.

“We need to ensure the reliability of service,” said Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) chief regulator Atty. Patrick Ty.

Among the improvements that the additional fees will pay for include the new seven-kilometer aqueduct from La Mesa Dam to the Balara Treatment Plant.

Manila Water meanwhile tunneled under Commonwealth Avenue from March 2020 to August 2021.

The was 50 meters or 18 floors from the surface and was constructed with the use of a tunnel boring machine. This was done for the first time in the Philippines in an urban setting.

The tunnel was used to rehabilitate three old aqueducts without having to resort to water service interruptions.

“We can shut sequentially each one of them without adversely affecting the services to our customers,” Arnold Mortar, chief operating officer of Manila Water East Zone, said.

“We need capital to ensure that much-needed water infrastructure is built so this is an example of where the tariff goes,” Manila Water President and CEO JV Emmanuel De Dios said.

Manila Water will raise P181 billion from the additional charges, while Maynilad will get P163 billion.

However, the customers will receive a refund if the water concessionaires fail to fulfill the services.

“Ino audit po natin sila at chine-check natin na only those that are prudent expenses can be recovered sa ating water tariff,” Ty said. —Richa Allyssa Noriega/DVM, GMA Integrated News