The Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS) has confirmed that Manila Water Co.’s 15-year contract extension up to 2032 was still in effect.
This was revealed by MWC in a report to the Philippine Stock Exchange nearly three months after the MWSS Board of Trustees revoked the contract extension signed in April 2019 under the Arroyo administration.
“On January 29, 2020, Manila Water obtained a letter from the MWSS Regulatory Office clarifying the Concession Agreement and the Memorandum of Agreement and Confirmation that provides for the 15-yearn extension from 2022 to 2037 have not yet been cancelled,” said MWC.
“Given this clarification by MWSS, Manila Water’s Concession Agreement and its concession period continue to be in force, as discussions with the government on the Concession Agreement remain ongoing,” it added.
The only concession MWC has agreed to so far with the government was to drop the collection of the P7.5 billion indemnification awarded by the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) for losses it suffered from the blocked water rate hikes from June 1, 2015 until November 22, 2019.
The move is meant to appease President Rodrigo Duterte who hasthreatened to scuttle MWC’s 25-year contract signed in 1997.
While MWC has agreed to defer the implementation of approved rate adjustment for 2020, the firm said it would continue “to work with MWSS on an arrangement as to how and when said deferral will be addressed in the future.”