Metro water utilities to challenge MWSS order to cut rates-A A +A
Friday, September 13, 2013
MANILA -- Metro Manila west zone concessionaire Maynilad Water and east zone concessionaire Manila Water will challenge the decision of the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) to cut their tariffs over the next five years.
MWSS ordered Maynilad to cut its basic water tariff by P1.46 per cubic meter while Manila Water was told to slash its charges by P7.24 per cubic meter.
Emmanuel Caparas, acting chief of the MWSS Regulatory Office, said Thursday that the adjusted water rates could take effect as early as October 2013.
Caparas said that the rate cuts were due to "disallowances for operating and capital expenditures."
In separate statements, both water concessionaires said they will initiate arbitration proceedings to dispute the decision of the MWSS.
"It is clear that the MWSS arrived at this rate determination after cutting away significant programs for building and maintaining the water and wastewater systems in the East Zone. Because of this, our ability to fulfill our service obligations to our customers will be severely compromised and impaired," Manila Water said.
"Under these circumstances, we feel and believe it is our duty to challenge the MWSS rate determination. As such, we will file the dispute notice which officially commences the process of arbitration as prescribed in the Concession Agreement," Manila Water added.
"We believe that MWSS' decision to reduce Maynilad's water tariff is unjustified. Maynilad will thus initiate arbitration proceedings to dispute the MWSS decision and to settle the tariff rebasing issues promptly, to avoid any disruption in its operations to the detriment of its consumers," Maynilad, for its part, said. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)