GWI to hike rates as PUC request granted

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Six months after the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) wrote the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) requesting an increase in their rates, the Commission on Tuesday announced that their request has been granted.

Managing Director, GWI, Dr Richard Van-West Charles

Earlier this year, GWI Head, Dr Richard Van-West Charles was recorded in the media saying that the increase in water rates was necessary as revenue collection alone in not sufficient to provide the service to Guyanese.

“Improvement in the quality of water provided to citizens as well as an increase in supply is dependent on much-needed revenue to finance the upgrade of aged infrastructure, build human resource capacity and purchase the requisite equipment and chemicals to treat the water,” he had said in a press statement in February.

To this end, on Tuesday, the PUC said that from October 1, 2018, residential consumers who have meters will be made to pay a fixed rate of $250 per month, with users who fall in the $60 to $90 category having to pay $86 per cubic meters (m3) of water.

All other customers will have to pay $112 per m3 per month.

Moreover, as at October 1, 2019, that fixed charge will be increased to $500 per month, with unmetered consumers having to pay a monthly consumption charge of $1,100.

However, it was outlined that pensioners, metered or not, will have no fixed monthly rates, but as at October 1, 2018, they will be required to pay a monthly charge of $86. In October 2019, metered pensioners will have to pay to $112 while unmetered pensioners will be charged $740.

In the case of non-residential unmetered customers, as at October 2018, the monthly fixed charge will be $250 and the consumption charge will be $125 per m3. In October 2019, this will increase to $500 monthly, with a consumption charge of $150 per m3.

In addition, with regards to small, medium, and large, commercial and industrial GWI consumers, as at October 1 2018, the monthly fixed charge will be $250, but the consumption charges will range from $2,200 to $21,000.

Meanwhile, an increase was also granted for the sewerage tariffs category, whereas residential consumers and pensioners will be required to pay $417 while non-residential customers will be charged $2,860.

The residential tamper fee will now be $30,000 while the non-residential fee will be hiked to $65,000.

The PUC also warned that as a condition of being granted the increase requested, the GWI will now have to meet specific milestones and provide reports on its performance to the regulatory body on a bi-annual basis.

This is expected to commence in January 2019.

GWI’s last approved increase in rates were in 2005.

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