NEDA launches P1.1 trillion water master plan; backs creation of Department of Water

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 16 2021 05:48 PM

Residents in Barangay Addition Hills in Mandaluyong City collect delivered water amid an ongoing water shortage in parts of Metro Manila on March 15, 2019. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News/File
Residents in Barangay Addition Hills in Mandaluyong City collect delivered water amid an ongoing water shortage in parts of Metro Manila on March 15, 2019. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News/File


MANILA— The Philippines needs investments of around P1.1 trillion to develop an effective water supply and sanitation system by 2030, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Chua said Thursday.

During a virtual event, the National Economic and Development Authority launched the “Philippine Water Supply and Sanitation Master Plan” with the goal of achieving universal access to safe, sufficient, affordable and sustainable water supply and sanitization by 2030. 

Chua said only about 44 percent of households have proper connection to waterworks systems while the remaining 56 percent or 57 million Filipinos have to get water from communal pipes or even springs or wells 250 meters away from their homes. 
 
The master plan focuses on 8 reform agendas which include:

• Establishing effective water supply and sanitation sector institutions
• Strengthening regulatory environment
• Creating and ensuring effective water supply and sanitation services
• Balancing water supply and demand
• Building climate resiliency
• Enabling access to financing
• Managing data and information to determine baseline and gaps of investments
• Driving research and development in the sector.

"By having clear policies and a unified framework, we look forward to more investments and participation from the private sector, the international development community, as well as local and national agencies," Chua said.

NEDA also supports the creation of the Department of Water Resources to "unify" the fragmented water sector and to lead the implementation of the country's master plan, Chua said. 
 
In 2019, Metro Manila was plagued by water shortages, especially during the summer due to supply woes. 

Last October, the National Water Resources Board (NWRB) warned of a possible water supply shortage in Metro Manila and nearby areas until 2022. Regulators need to build new water sources, it said.

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— with a report from Jasmin Romero, ABS-CBN News