Supply, distribution of water in Yangon to be privatized: Mayor

Picture Zarni Phyo/The Myanmar Times

26 Aug 19 - Source: Myanmar Times - The Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC) will invite the private sector to take over the supply and distribution of water in Yangon, Mayor U Maung Maung Soe was quoted by state media as saying.

He said the YCDC has been facing difficulties managing wastage and lacks the manpower required to prevent illegal tapping of water from the city's pipelines, which is then repackaged and sold for higher prices in various municipalities, resulting in losses for the city.

As such, the city has opted to allow private companies to manage the supply and distribution of water as a business instead. U Maung Maung Soe added that a ceiling price will be fixed to prevent water from becoming overly expensive.

"Privatisation is the best solution to help YCDC stem its losses," U Maung Maung Soe was quoted as saying.

Currently, water prices charged do not cover production costs, with the government subsidising the balance for the benefit of the public. The YCDC has never increased water meter charges, U Maung Maung Soe said.

Private companies have already been asked to submit expressions of interest by this month for distributing water in Yangon region. A tender process will take place later.

In the meantime, YCDC will launch an awareness campaign on the installation of water meters as well as the need to curb wastage and illegal tapping of water from the city's pipelines. Almost half the water distributed is wasted, U Maung Maung Soe said.

The YCDC collects K88 per unit of water for residential use and K110 per unit for commercial use. One unit equals 220 gallons, according to state media.

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