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PUTRAJAYA: The Selangor menteri besar’s demand over post-Langat 2 water tariffs is ludicrous, said Energy, Water and Green Technology Minister Datuk Seri Peter Chin Fah Kui.
He said it was ridiculous to put the tariffs in writing now as there were many factors that needed to be taken into account when making the calculations.
“How can they ask us to put in writing the water tariff for the next one or two years? It cannot be determined today.
“The Selangor menteri besar (Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim) should know that it is not a matter of putting a figure in writing.
The tariff must reflect the cost at the time, and must include all the cost factors,” he told the New Straits Times.
Chin said the cost would include the generative cost as well as the processing cost.
“We have to take into consideration the cost that the water concessionaires, such as Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor Sdn Bhd and Puncak Niaga (M) Sdn Bhd, are bearing. At the end of the day, the water tariff must reflect the need at the time, and must recover the costs of the industry for it to survive.”
He was commenting on Khalid’s demand that the Federal Government put in writing the proposed post-Langat 2 water tariff and also declare water facilities worth RM10.5 billion as state assets.
Khalid last week issued the ultimatum, saying the Federal Government needed to do it in writing and not just make verbal promises.
He had said the demands must first be met before both parties could even discuss about the Langat 2 treatment plant, which would ensure sustainable supply till 2030.
On Khalid’s second demand, that RM10.5 billion worth of water facilities be declared state assets, Chin said the Selangor government must justify its claim on these facilities.
“The water treatment plants were built with money that was loaned from the Federal Government. In short, it must first justify and quantify these facilities, which it claims belong to it.
“They cannot generally declare the figures and not fully state where the figures came from,” he said, adding that these matters needed to be negotiated properly and not flung back and forth.
He said his ministry would facilitate the meeting between Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor (Syabas) and the National Water Services Commission (Span) over water rationing in the Klang Valley.
“Syabas must get the approval from Span, so my ministry will facilitate this.”
Nearly 210,000 households will be affected by the crisis as water reserve levels have dropped to two per cent, below the 10 per cent national safe level.