- Published on Wednesday, 29 August 2012 01:10
- Written by ORTON KIISHWEKO
- Hits: 535
COMMERCIAL and industrial water users could face a 13.3 per cent price hike should the Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority ( EWURA) approves applications from four cities and major towns at public hearings which started on Monday.
Four Authorities including Arusha, Mbeya, Morogoro and Mafinga want commercial and industrial water users to pay more, an application they attribute to the 40.29 per cent increase in electricity costs.
They claim that costs of providing water are very high. EWURA has announced that it was starting to hold public inquiries to seek views on whether or not the applications deserve any merit.
"Ewura has called for stakeholders' views on automatic water tariff following an adjustment application by the Morogoro Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Authority," noted EWURA Director General Haruna Masebu in a statement
Similar applications for hikes have been filed by Arusha (AUWSA), Mbeya (MBEYA UWSA), and Mafinga (MAUWASA). The EWURA boss said they had received Automatic Water Supply Tariff Adjustment Application from the Morogoro Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (MORUWASA) based on the increase in operating costs caused by the 40.29 per cent hike in electricity tariff.
"MORUWASA requests an average hike in water tariff by 13.31 per cent. This represents an increase ranging between 13.28 per cent and 13.33 per cent, commercial at 13.33 per cent and industrial at 13.33 per cent," he said.
He said that specifically, they requested tariff increases at 13.33 per cent for domestic institutional (13.28 percent); Commercial (13.33() industrial (13.33)and kiosks (13.28).
He noted that those who wish to submit views pertinent to the inquiry are requested to do so by submitting them in writing to EWURA's Director General at any time within the two weeks after the notice.
He said EWURA will collect views from stakeholders, including the Consumers Consultative Council (CCC), the Government Consultative Council (GCC) and the general public. According to the Mwauwasa Executive Director, Engineer Mashaka Sitta, electricity bill per month is 30 per cent of the total revenues.
According to the "Business Leader Perceptions of the Investment Climate in Tanzania - 2011", for the first time, water was recently noted as a barrier to doing business in the country.
In the report, business leaders were asked about enabling environment factors that are important for the growth of their investments, factors that make it difficult to do business and non-tariff barriers that are relevant to their business.
The survey, commissioned by BEST-AC revealed that the factors that make it difficult for businesses to get on with running and growing their business, comfortably are power, roads, corruption and water.
A University of Dar es Salaam Economist, Dr Lenny Kasonga said that soaring water tariffs may impact negatively on the export competitiveness in the region against the neighbouring countries. "It can affect industrial production," he said.