KUALA LUMPUR (May 25): Pengurusan Aset Air Berhad (PAAB) is planning to build several new water treatment plants (LRAs) in Kelantan, said Water and Natural Resources Minister Datuk Seri Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man.
He said that among others, a new water treatment plant will be built in Semerak, Pasir Puteh, with a capacity of 50 million litres (MLD) a day.
“Presently, water is purchased from Terengganu to meet the inadequate needs in the area. With this new development, we expect it to benefit about 300,000 residents,” he said.
He said this while attending the PAAB Aidilfitri celebration which was also attended by PAAB chairman Datuk Dr Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali.
Meanwhile, he also said that discussions between PAAB and the Terengganu government on the restructuring agreement for the State’s water services industry were progressing smoothly.
He said the Terengganu government would receive benefits if the water structuring agreement was implemented as accepted by other State governments in the governance of water services, including the disposal of rural water debts and the provision of funds to upgrade facilities.
“We see this as very positive. The negotiations and governance of this agreement will be further strengthened,” he said when asked about the indications of the Terengganu government’s acceptance of the agreement.
In another development, Tuan Ibrahim said that the review of water tariffs should be implemented as tariffs in some States have not been reviewed for the past 38 years.
Despite the move, he gave his assurance that any increase would not affect the people, especially the B40 group.
“We make projections so that any increase will not affect the B40 and the poor. Although there is an increase, we focus on the tariffs imposed on the industry and so on.
“We take into account the factors of burden and hardship to the people. However, at the same time, water operators also need funds to upgrade and maintain the infrastructure,” he said.