Israel’s Finance Ministry lines up tariff reduction

Published May 30th, 2013

Israel’s water tariff could be reduced for the first time in years following an agreement between the Finance Ministry and the country’s Council of Local Authorities.

According to the agreement reached this week the base tariff will be cut at the beginning of 2014 and will be reduced by 5% by the end of 2015. Water tariffs have gone up by over 30% in recent years to cope with the severe drought in past years and the cost of desalination. However, the drought conditions are now considered to be over, due to a combination of improved weather and investment in desalination.

The Finance Ministry said that the move was a result of a package aimed at reducing costs for the country’s municipal and regional water companies, with the ultimate aim of reducing their numbers through mergers. Israel’s State Comptroller in a recent report criticised the number of water companies operating in the country.