San Pedro Sula accepts increased water rates

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Honduran municipality San Pedro Sula has accepted the 8.9% water rate hike implemented by concessionaire Aguas de San Pedro (ASP), local press reported.

"According to the concessions contract the [rates increase] becomes law and it is impossible to modify that law," San Pedro mayor Óscar Kilgore said. The mayor had originally questioned the amount of the hike, which ASP implemented in March based on inflation factors.

At the same time, ASP agreed to other actions outside of the contract agreement, such as "social investment" in schools and water grants to municipal organizations.

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ASP will also begin its US$10mn potable water system improvement program, ASP president Andrea Mangano said. The goal is "to give San Pedro the same type of quality water service that is given to the capital of Italy," he said, adding: "Four years ago [in San Pedro] one could not even drink the tap water."

ASP is controlled by Italian interests.