No water tariffs hike in Johor next year: Jimmy Puah

KULAI: Water tariffs in Johor will not be increased next year, said state International Trade, Investment and Utilities Committee chairman, Jimmy Puah Wee Tse.

He said it was earlier agreed that the state would have new tariff once every three years following an agreement with state water services operator, SAJ Ranhill Sdn Bhd.

“The existing tariff will expire at the end of this year and now we are in the process of negotiating. However, we will not allow any increase in the tariff as that will only burden the people,” he said at a futsal programme at Kampung Manis here.

Johor has the highest water tariff in the nation despite its rich water resources and it's sale of water to Singapore since the lion state separated from Malaysia.

The new tariff will be effective from 2019 to 2022.

Puah said, water business is a lucrative business and there are parties who have expressed interest in this business in Johor.

He said, if SAJ Ranhill can co-operate with the state government, and ensure good performance such as zero water disruption, then there was no need for a second water operator.

He said the state government is going to replace 7,000km of water pipes in Johor soon.

“There will be water disruptions during the installation of these PVC pipes, and we will send water lorries to the affected areas if needed.”

He said new material pipes can transport water with higher water pressure and help to reduce leakage problems.

He said, ” We want to reduce Non-Revenue Water (NRW) from 25% to 23% next year.

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From September 1, a total of 205,217 account holders are going to enjoy 10 cubic metres or RM8 worth of free water.

For domestic users, the minimum charges for a household are RM7 for a month. The rate per cubic meter varies from RM0.80 to RM3.00 depending on the volume used.