By Victor V. Saulon

CUSTOMERS of the two water concessionaires servicing the National Capital Region (NCR) will see an increase in their bills — to take effect in mid-October — as the water regulatory office factors in the impact of the weakening of the peso against foreign currencies, largely the US dollar and the Japanese yen.

In a notice pushed in newspapers, Manila Water Company, Inc. said the foreign currency differential adjustment (FCDA) for customers of the ease zone will result in a P0.17 per cubic meter (/cu.m.) increase in the fourth quarter over the rate in the previous quarter.

Separately, Maynilad Water Services, Inc. announced an FCDA adjustment equivalent to a P0.02/cu.m. increase quarter-on-quarter in the tariff mechanism to recover or compensate for fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.

“Gains and losses can arise from the payment of concession loans and foreign-currency-denominated debt whose proceeds are used to improve services,” Patrick Lester N. Ty, chief regulator of Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), said in a statement.

The adjustment — by the MWSS Board of Trustees on Sept. 26 — will take effect 15 days after publication or on Oct. 13.

For Manila Water, the impact of the fourth-quarter FCDA adjustment is a P0.93 per month increase for those consuming 10 cu.m. or less, except lifeline customers, who are exempt from the quarterly charges.

The monthly bills of those consuming 20 cu.m. per month and 30 cu.m. per month will increase by P2.06 and P4.20, respectively.

Manila Water’s approved FCDA adjustment is 2.43% of its average basic charge of P28.52/cu.m. or P0.69/cu.m., higher by P0.17 per cu.m. than the P0.52 per cu.m. in the third quarter.

Meanwhile, Maynilad residential customers using 10 cu. m. or less will see their monthly bills go up by P0.09. Those consuming 20 cu.m. per month can expect an increase of P0.34, while those using 30 cu.m. will have an increase of P0.70 monthly.

Maynilad’s FCDA adjustment is negative 0.35% of its 2019 average basic charge of P36.24 per cu.m. or negative P0.13/cu.m. This is an increase of P0.02/cubic meter compared to P0.15 in the third quarter.

Ayala-led Manila Water provides water and wastewater services to the east zone concession areas covering the municipality of Pateros, as well as the cities of Makati, Mandaluyong, Pasig, San Juan, Taguig and Marikina. It is also serves the southeastern parts of Quezon City, as well as Sta. Ana and San Andres in Manila.

In the province of Rizal, the company serves the city of Antipolo as well as the municipalities of San Mateo, Rodriguez, Cainta, Taytay, Teresa, Angono, Baras, Binangonan and Jala-jala.

Maynilad provides water and wastewater services to residents in most parts of Manila; northern and western parts of Quezon City; western parts of Makati City; as well as the cities of Caloocan, Pasay, Parañaque, Las Piñas, Valenzuela, Muntinlupa, Navotas, and Malabon in Metro Manila.

It also serves the cities of Cavite, Bacoor and Imus, as well as the municipalities of Kawit, Noveleta and Rosario in the province of Cavite.