Blantyre water consumers will have to dig deeper in their pocket from this month end as Blantyre Water Board (BWB) has announced an increase in water tariffs.

BWB last increased the water tariffs in August 2012.

BWB spokesperson Innocent Mbvundula said domestic water tariffs have jumped from K720 to K1, 130 per 5,000 litres.

He said communal water points will now be selling 10 litres water at K 1. 23 from K 0. 82 while institutions will now be paying K3,760 per 10, 000 litres from K2,350.

Commercial rates have jumped from K2,540 per 10,000 litres to K4,191.

Mbvundula explained that the upward adjustment of water tariffs has been necessitated by the rising cost of delivering the essential service to customers.

” For the Board to continue offering its services in a more efficient manner, we had to ask the government for a tariff increase because the operational costs have gone up significantly since the water tariffs were raised last year,” said Mbvundula.

He said one of its main inputs, which is electricity, has also seen its tariffs hiked, thereby increasing the board’s costs of production.

“For the month of March 2013, electricity bill alone was K180 million compared to K65 million in the same period last year, 2012. This entails that the cost of electricity as one of main inputs, now is thrice that of same period last year,” explained Mbvundula.

He further said the cost of raw materials for production and distribution of water such as chemicals and other equipment have also gone up significantly August last year.

Mbvundula also said that the increase in price of fuel has also contributed to the adjustment.

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