Water prices to increase ten fold
Households are charged for water consumption without a water meter
Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Ministry of Municipalities and Tourism made a decision to set the price of drinking water supply to households based on the size of the plot of land on which the house is built.
According to the decision made in August 2012, the price of water is set to be IQD 50 per square meter per month.
Saiwan Ahmed, a resident of Sheikh Mihieddin Quarter in Suleimaniya, says he used to pay IQD 1,000 (approximately USD 0.83) per month for water for his 200 square meter house, but this has increased to IQD 10,000.
“On what basis are they now charging me 10 times as much as before?” asked Ahmed.
Sozan Ahmed, another resident of the same neighborhood, says that the Ministry should supply them with water on a regular schedule first and then think about increasing its price.
Hikmat Aziz, economic expert, argues that price of any good or service should be set according to consumption.
“You cannot increase the price of goods and ask everyone to pay the same price,” Aziz told the Globe. “Some people waste water while some others save water, and it is not fair for both to pay the same price.”
Farhad Mohammed, Sulaimaniya Water Director, says this price has been set for the whole region.
“This rate will be valid until water meters will be installed for households,” stated Mohammed. “It is true that the pricing may not be accurate but the cost of the water we supply to the people is much higher than the amount we are charging them for supplying water.”
A plumber is installing a water meter in a house in KAni neighborhood in Erbil in this file photo of June 14, 2009.