Debt service of Sri Lanka’s Water Board to be borne by tax payers

ECONOMYNEXT – The bulk of the debt service relating to projects implemented by the National Water Supply and Drainage Board will be given to the Treasury to be paid by general taxes on the population and not directly by its customers, a finance ministry report said.

The Water Board has been given the go ahead to borrow 67.81 billion rupees domestically, 678.55 million US dollars and 43.48 million Euros for foreign funded projects.

By a cabinet in 2016, 50 percent of the debt service of urban water supply and 75 percent of the debt service or rural water supply will be taken over by the Treasury.

However the highest proportion of non-revenue water (unbilled water) is also from urban areas. The Greater Colombo area 46.16 percent was non-revenue water compared to an national average of 27.28 percent.

Debt service by the Treasury indicates that the cost will not be borne directly through the water bills but people will pay through taxes paid for other goods.

The entire debt service of water projects aimed at mitigating chronic kid disease will be borne by general taxes. (Colombo/July15/2016)

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