Manila Water denies impending 780% rate hike
Manila Water Co. Inc. has warned of a hefty 780% increase in water rates or as much as P26.70 per cubic meter and worse traffic in Metro Manila if the Supreme Court decision issued last August is not reversed.
The STAR/Boy Santos, File
Manila Water denies impending 780% rate hike
( - October 11, 2019 - 12:02pm

MANILA, Philippines — Water concessionaire Manila Water clarified that it would not impose a 780% increase in water rates.

Earlier this week, the Ayala-led water service provider warned of a 780% increase in water rates or as much as P26.70 per cubic meter if the Supreme Court would not reverse its decision.

The high court recently upheld its decision to fine Manila Water P921 million for failing to complete its sewerage projects by 2009 under the Clean Water Act.

"We never stated that it will be an impending increase nor did we make any statement about passing on to consumers," Manila Water said in a statement Friday.

Manila Water clarified that the 780% increase included in their motion for reconsideration to the SC was the supposed cost of building wastewater facilities to comply with the Clean Water Act.

Both Manila Water and Maynilad, as well as the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System, have been fined P2 billion for failing to comply with the law.

Sewerage projects were supposed to be completed by 2009 or five years after the Clean Water Act took effect. The water firms will also have a running daily fine of P322,102 until the projects are completed.

“If the concessionaires were to compress into five years as the SC ruling wants what was planned as a 40-year project, the hundreds of billions of pesos required would lead to an increase in the water bill of subscribers, leaving them less money for other necessities and triggering higher inflation,” Manila Water said Wednesday. — Patricia Lourdes Viray

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