Cabinet Decision Pending on Revised Water Sector Policy

Photo: Garwin Davis Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, addressing the Government of Jamaica/Inter-American Development Bank Water Conference at the RIU Hotel in Montego Bay on Wednesday, May 3.

Story Highlights

  • Cabinet is expected to review and approve a revised Water Sector Policy for Jamaica shortly.
  • This was disclosed by Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, who said the Policy commits the Government to providing universal access to improved water services for all Jamaicans by 2030.
  • Dr. Chang said the Policy represents the Administration’s decisive approach to addressing the challenges that many Jamaicans experience with the lack of adequate and reliable potable water, particularly in rural communities.

Cabinet is expected to review and approve a revised Water Sector Policy for Jamaica shortly.

This was disclosed by Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, who said the Policy commits the Government to providing universal access to improved water services for all Jamaicans by 2030.

He was speaking at the Government of Jamaica/IDB Water Conference at the RIU Hotel in Montego Bay on Wednesday, May 3.

Dr. Chang said the Policy represents the Administration’s decisive approach to addressing the challenges that many Jamaicans experience with the lack of adequate and reliable potable water, particularly in rural communities.

“Under the draft policy, 85 per cent of the island will be designated as Utility Service Areas where piped water supplied by a utility service provider is done at the least-cost method. These areas will largely be serviced by the National Water Commission,” he explained.

The Minister said the rest of the island will be supplied by the Rural Water Supply Limited, “where water supplied… is not the least-cost method of providing the service”.

“Extension of utility services will largely be financed by the NWC. It is estimated that up to 2030, US$3.4 billion will have to be invested in the rehabilitation and expansion of NWC’s network, both in the rural and urban areas,” he added.

Dr. Chang said the Policy and Development Strategy also envisages the establishment of a Water Access Fund which will be a revolving facility managed by the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation.

This Fund, he explained, will provide loan or grant financing for projects in Non-Utility Service Areas.

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