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In response to the fact that access to sanitation lags significantly behind access to water, the government published its White Paper on Basic Household Sanitation in The policy outlines the roles of the various stakeholders — households, municipalities, provincial governments, various branches of national government — and establishes coordination and monitoring mechanisms. It also calls for Infrastructure Grants to municipalities to finance investments in sanitation. The paper notes that it is the government's policy to provide free basic services to the poorest, but does not spell out how this policy will be implemented in the case of basic sanitation.

Following a second White Paper on water supply and sanitation policy published in after the first White Paper in a national policy was established to further decentralise the sector, phasing out the national government's involvement in service provision, limiting DWAF's role to policy and regulation. In rural areas this policy of decentralisation has been supported by the Masibambane program , a sector-wide approach linked to budget-based donor support for rural water supply and sanitation. The initial investment was ZAR 2. In February the government launched a programme to eradicate the use of bucket toilets.

Bucket toilets consist of a bucket placed under a toilet seat; in formally established settlements the buckets are emptied on a daily basis by the municipality and the content is brought to a sewage treatment plant. However, buckets are also used in newly established informal settlements. There were , bucket toilets in formally established settlements as of There was a strong political will to carry out the program.

However, communities resisted the construction of latrines, forcing construction to a standstill and asked for flush toilets. There had been no community participation in the choice of technologies. The programme was very much focused on the provision of infrastructure, with little emphasis on sustainability and hygiene promotion, so that the health impact was limited. The deadline to complete the program was moved from to In August a National Sanitation Strategy was published.

It covers, among other things, "the roles and responsibilities in sanitation delivery, planning for sanitation, funding sanitation, implementation approaches, regulating the sanitation sector, and monitoring and evaluation". It was followed by a Free Basic Sanitation Implementation Strategy in March , with the aim of reaching universal access to sanitation by According to one observer, the strategy was "deliberately vague" because the issue of free provision of sanitation services is so controversial.

There is no legal obligation to provide free basic sanitation. The implementation strategy includes eight different options to channel subsidies. The policy was piloted in 17 municipalities in , and in a further 23 municipalities in , although it is unclear which subsidy mechanism is being used. One indicator to measure the technical efficiency of water utilities is the level of non-revenue water.

Tariffs include bulk water tariffs charged by water boards to municipalities and retail water tariffs charged by municipalities to users. Bulk water tariffs vary greatly. In the largest water board, Rand Water , charged Rand 3. The highest bulk water tariff Rand 9. Retail water tariffs vary between municipalities and between user categories, with non-residential users being charged higher tariffs than residential users.

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Typically water tariffs also vary with consumption, with higher tariffs applied to higher consumption. In Johannesburg water provided between 6 and 15 cubic meters of water per month for free, depending on the poverty level of residents. For those considered not poor, the tariff for the tranche between 6 and 10 cubic meters was R4. The bill for 10 cubic meters per month thus is R In Cape Town water tariffs for the first block beyond free basic water are slightly lower than in Johannesburg at R4.

The water bill for 10 cubic meters per month is R Durban distinguishes between a lower tariff for semi-pressure service for houses in low-income settlements with roof tanks and a higher full pressure service for "formal" housing areas. Semi-pressure service is free until 9 cubic meters, while full-pressure service costs R9. The bill for 10 cubic meters per month is R7 for semi-pressure service and R97 for full-pressure service.


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There is also a free low-pressure service for ground tanks in informal and rural areas, under which water is pumped once a day to fill a litres ground tank. South Africa has introduced a policy of free basic services, including water, electricity and solid waste collection.

As part of that policy, every household is to receive the first 6 cubic meters per month for free. The policy was introduced gradually since within the means of each municipality. Most municipalities provide free basic water to all or almost all their residents. Based on an average consumption of 5 cubic meters of free water per household and month, an estimated 8 million beneficiary households, and an estimated water supply cost of 4 Rand per cubic meter, the annual cost of the policy can be estimated at 2bn Rand USD m. This corresponds to about 0. Another estimate puts the cost of free basic water at 5.

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Out of the 32 million people that received free basic water in , almost half, or 15 million, were not poor. Furthermore, many poor in rural areas, who receive limited amounts of water for free through standpipes, do not benefit fully. Those without access to publicly provided water do not benefit at all from the program.

This is one of the reasons why in the government announced it would review its implementation strategy for free basic water, possibly through registers of poor users. As part of this review process, Durban has now changed its implementation of the free basic water policy: Households living in properties that are valued above a certain threshold now must prove that their income is below the poverty limit, in order to continue to receive free basic water.

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The reason for the change was that most of those benefiting from free basic water were not poor. They used less than amount of free basic water — 9 cubic meters per month in the case of Durban — for the simple reason that there were two or less residents in the household. There is little information available on their affordability, i. If a household consumes less than the free basic water limit, the share is obviously zero. For a household in Cape Town that has no sewer connection and consumes 10 cubic meters of water, the monthly water bill is almost R20 or USD 2.

With the poverty line at R per capita and month, [72] the monthly income of a four-person household at the poverty line would be R, and the water bill would be 1 percent of income. However, according to another source the poverty level in South Africa was only R per household, [69] in which case the share of the water bill would be 2 percent of income, and higher for those living below the poverty line. In , eleven of the 13 water boards were financially viable.

The exceptions were Namakwa and Bushbuckridge water boards. Municipalities owed the water boards more than Rand 1. There is little information available on cost recovery at the municipal level, partly because revenues and costs associated with water supply and sanitation are not necessarily accounted for separately in municipal budgets. If Water Services Authorities prepare water and sanitation budgets, asset replacement costs depreciation are often not included in budgets. Municipalities cover these deficits in large part through the "equitable share" transfers from national government.

According to the Infrastructure Barometer published by DBSA and based on figures provided by the National Treasury, total municipal investments in water supply and sanitation in were Municipal investments in the sector increased substantially from when they were about four times less than in at 2.

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Investments include direct expenditures for TCTA and indirect expenditures in the form of transfers to Water Boards and Water Service Authorities municipalities , mostly for dams, bulk water transfers and water treatment plants. The largest project under construction is the De Hoop Dam which is part of the Olifants River Water Resources Development Programme that provides water for mining and municipal uses.

The larger municipalities rely more on loans and on internal cash generation, while the smaller ones depend more on grants and other sources of funding. Wealthier municipalities partially finance free basic water through cross-subsidies from non-residential users and local tax revenue. All municipalities receive a constitutionally mandated share of national tax revenues as an unconditional recurrent grant, called "equitable share".

One of its objectives is to offset the cost of free basic water and free basic electricity. The formula provides higher grants to those municipalities that have a high number of poor among those that receive water services. If a municipality increases access to water, its share in the transfers thus also increases. The number of poor is determined through census data, which — according to some municipalities — underestimates the actual extent of poverty. The MIG programme is aimed at providing all South Africans with at least a basic level of service by the year through the provision of grant finance to cover the capital cost of basic infrastructure for the poor.

In addition, there is a Capacity Building Grant. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Water supply and sanitation in South Africa - overview. Eastern Cape. Free State. North West. Northern Cape. It sheds additional light on such policy issues as the choice of tariff structures for water services, cost recovery for water services and affordability.

Land use. Default Title. Add to cart. Add to wishlist Add to compare. Reviews Delivery: Can be download Immediately after purchasing. Factsheet Block Body. Proper water tariffs provide incentives to improve sustainable water and sanitation services and to use water resources more efficiently: Tariffs generate revenues to recover specific costs e. Cycle of water poverty and pathways to change. Some of the most discussed topics are: Water tariffs are a powerful management tool to achieve various objectives in the water and sanitation sector.

However setting tariffs is a political process that is rife with controversy. Research has shown that low tariffs are set largely for political, rather than practical, purposes. Free water is often used as a campaign promise, for political gain. In India for example, this has lead to the situation that the agricultural sector, which uses approx. This political interference has been found to be a significant barrier to effective cost recovery see also policies and legal framework.

The picture shows a politician who promises free water to gain votes by the elections. Moreover, it must be considered that poor without access to public water network are already paying a high proportion of their incomes either in excessive charges for poor quality water from water vendors, or in lost productivity through time taken by women to collect water from distant sources.

Tariff setting practises affects the goals of different stakeholders in conflicting ways: consumers need affordable and equal water services whereas utilities require stable revenues for cost recovery and economic efficiency. A tariff structure alone cannot cover all the needs. Often, there is a lack of empirical data about how the application of different tariff structures affects water use for different consumer classes and whether or not price changes would affect customers' decisions to connect or stay connected to the water distribution system.

There are no market tests for different water tariff structures. Regulatory Environment and Main Stakeholders. At the national level, the following entities usually have a say in defining the environment in which water and sanitation management take place: The state, through ministries in charge of water and sanitation, and sometimes through ministries in charge of social programmes mostly for the subsidy aspect , The regulating agency, which may be part of the sector ministry or independent, Intermediate levels of government, which may intervene for example in the implementation of water subsidies, Municipalities, which are typically responsible for basic service provision in their jurisdictions, and may own local utility companies.

Water utility companies public or private ; Alternative providers communities, private sector entities ; Consumers households, agricultural, commercial and industrial , directly or through intermediaries, e. A briefly overview of water and wastewater tariffs generally adopted by water utilities is given below: Fixed charge : the monthly water bill is independent of the volume consumed.


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Uniform volumetric tariff : is a volumetric charge with a rate proportional to water consumption metering is needed. All units cubic meters are priced the same rate, independently of total consumption. Increasing block tariff : is a step-wise volumetric charge metering is needed. With this tariff the unit charge is constant over a specific range of water use block and then increases as the consume increases. Decreasing block tariff : is the opposite of the increasing block tariff: the rate per unit of water is high for the initial lower block of consumption and decreases as the volume of consumption increases.

Pricing for water and water services (C7.01)

Two parts tariffs: have a fixed charge component plus a variable charge depending on the volume of water consumed e. Two parts tariffs are widely promoted by the World Bank, aim at recovering costs and achieving economic efficiency. The fixed part usually corresponds to the fixed costs of production and administration and the proportional part can be adjusted to the marginal cost OLIVER Price of water versus the quantity of water used for selected tariffs.

The graph shows how the price of water to the consumer changes as the quantity of water used increases for some of these tariff structures. Media PPT. Water Pricing PPT.

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Library References. Thematic Overview Paper 7. URL [Accessed: In: Water Policy : Volume 4 , 1— In: Water Policy 5 : , 61— Washington, D. Pricing Water and Sanitation Services. Human Development Report