By Czeriza Valencia (The Philippine Star) | Updated September 19, 2013
MANILA, Philippines - West Zone concessionaire Maynilad Water Services, Inc. (Maynilad) has added four new villages in Las Pinas City in its service coverage.
These are Camella Homes 6, Diego Cerra, Tierra Hermosa Homes 2 and St. Mary Homes.
As a result, some 740 households in the said subdivisions now have round-the-clock water access at a minimum pressure of 16 pounds per square inch (psi).
Prior to the takeover, residents in these subdivisions had to rely on deep wells and costly water deliveries from private water vendors.
“Studies have shown that prolonged groundwater over-extraction leads to land sinking, which can damage infrastructure and worsen flooding. Our aggressive expansion and service improvement projects, especially in the south, aim to provide more people with potable, reliable surface water so they do not have to extract groundwater for their daily requirements,” said Maynilad president and CEO Ricky Vargas.
Maynilad services the cities of Manila (all but portions of San Andres and Sta. Ana), Quezon City (west of San Juan River, West Avenue, EDSA, Congressional, Mindanao Avenue, the northern part starting from the Districts of the Holy Spirit and Batasan Hills), Makati (west of South Super Highway), Caloocan, Pasay, Parañaque, Las Piñas, Muntinlupa, Valenzuela, Navotas and Malabon all in Metro Manila; Cavite City, the cities of Bacoor and Imus and the towns of Kawit, Noveleta and Rosario, all in Cavite Province.
Average basic water rates is supposed to go down starting next month after the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) Regulatory Office denied the petitions filed by water concessionaires Manila Water Co. Inc. and Maynilad to hike rates.
Both concessionaires including East Zone concessioners Manila Water, said they were contest the rate cut.
However, the MWSS board has approved a 29.47 percent downward adjustment on Manila Water’s 2012 average basic water charge of P24.57 per cubic meter, which is supposed to be implemented in five equal tranches of -5.894 percent per year. Manila Water proposed a basic rate increase of P5.83 per cubic meter.
The MWSS board has likewise approved a negative adjustment of 4.82 percent on Maynilad’s 2012 average basic water charge of P30.28 per cubic meter, which is supposed to be implemented in five equal tranches of -0.964 per charging year. Maynilad requested for an P8.58 per cubic meter rate hike for 2013 to 2018.
MWSS acting chief regulator Emmanuel Caparas said the board decided to approve the downward adjustment in water rates as the two firms were unable to justify the need for higher rates based on their business and investment plans for the next five years.