Affluent consumers pay less for water than poor in Asia

Poor people in Asian cities spend far more for far less water than do the more affluent, according to Arther McIntosh, former Asian Development Bank senior water supply specialist in his new book "Asian Water Supplies - Reaching the Urban Poor."

Poor people in Asian cities spend far more for far less water than do the more affluent, according to Arther McIntosh, former Asian Development Bank senior water supply specialist in his new book "Asian Water Supplies - Reaching the Urban Poor."

This newly published book examines the inequities of water costs and distribution in Asia and offers solutions to age-old problems that have kept the urban poor paying high rates for less, often substandard quality water. The book discusses governance and corruption, shortages, willingness to pay, non-revenue water, private sector involvement, utility efficiency and other urban water issues.

He argues for a counter-intuitive approach that, if the system is managed appropriately, with planned 24-hour piped service to all residents, raising piped water tariffs in a city can provide adequate funds to connect the previously unserved who are paying huge premiums for water that passes through many middlemen before delivery to homes.

The book, published jointly by the Asian Development Bank and the International Water Association, is a guide and sourcebook to help Asian governments and donors to avoid repeated mistakes. For more information, visit the website: www.adb.org/ publications.

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