Higher water bills to come for Iranians

Iran Materials 16 May 2012 11:33 (UTC +04:00)

Azerbaijan, Baku, May 15 / Trend M. Moezzi /

As the second phase of their government's subsidy reform plan goes into effect, Iranians will face higher water bills.

Just how much the price of water will increase isn't clear yet, but it will most likely be 20 percent, Mehr news agency reported on Wednesday.

In the first phase of the subsidy reform program, households paid 20 cents (USD) for every cubic meter of water they used and industries were charged 34 cents.

The Energy Ministry has proposed four pricing scenarios, but the final decision will be made by the Targeted Subsidies Organization.

One goal of subsidy reforms was to encourage resource conservation. Water consumption in Iran has dropped six percent since the program's first phase began.

Another goal for price reforms is to cut the years-long losses incurred by water and sewer companies as they have provided services for much less than what they actually cost.

Started in December 2011, the subsidy program pays out $37 to Iranians while eliminating subsidies for energy carriers and some commodities. When it goes into effect, the second phase of the program will usher in higher prices for water, natural gas, electricity, petrol and bread.