Selangor Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri Amirudin Shari speaks at the state government’s monthly assembly at the Selangor state secretariat building (SUK), here on January 13. — Picture by REMY ARIFIN/SELANGORKINI

by Afix Redzuan

SHAH ALAM, Jan 13 — The state government is in discussion with relevant parties including the Federal government before finalising the decision on the proposed water tariff hike, says Dato’ Seri Amirudin Shari.

The Selangor Menteri Besar said a unilateral decision on the matter cannot be made as the feedback from the Federal government has be taken into account.

“If the new tariff hike is to be implemented in other states as well, then we cannot make our own decision. We have to wait for the response from the Federal government,” he told reporters after attending the state’s monthly assembly at the Selangor state secretariat building (SUK), here today.

Amirudin said the state administration is assessing every aspect of the matter, which also includes the suggestion of a rebate programme to the Federal government, as it would involve the state’s free water scheme.

“We just took over (the management) of water (in the state) for about two years. After taking over, we created a detailed business plan as we have the free water supply policy.

“We have to look at all the factors because what matters most is the sustainability of our water supply and the ability of our water company to maintain the supply,” he said.

Previously, it was reported that all states have agreed in principle to implement new water tariff adjustments in 2020.

The proposed implementation of the mechanism involves an increase of 0.06 sen to 0.71 sen per 1,000 litres, which is lower compared to other utilities such as electricity, gas and telecommunications.

The current average water tariff rate is RM1.38 per 1,000 litres in comparison the actual cost of RM2.31 per 1,000 litres.

Meanwhile, Amirudin stressed that Selangor would continue to negotiate with the Federal government to take over Indah Water Consortium’s (IWK) to ensure quality and clean water supply to the consumers.

“There is no guarantee in place when a water-related incident occurs. And when there is a mishap (water/odour pollution), the state government would have to take responsibility.

“It is best for Selangor to take over IWK’s management to ensure clean water supply and to be a guarantor when there is a water crisis,” he added.

The Selangor government had previously expressed its interest in managing IWK following the recent and repetitive odour pollution in the national sewerage operator’s piping line in the state late last year.