Manila Water Company said Tuesday net income fell 18 percent in the first half to P2.9 billion from a year ago as a drought-induced supply shortage hit its main concession area in the east zone of Metro Manila and Rizal.
Manila Water said outside the east zone, business operations saw higher earnings contribution, foreign operations held steady and new business developments continued to provide market expansion and new sector opportunities.
It said that in the east zone, “billed volume declined by 2 percent, directly driven by lower water supply and service availability during the period.”
Manila Water’s net income for east zone dropped 25 percent in the first half to P2.5 billion. The company said the one-time bill waiver program also affected topline growth, with the company recognizing a revenue reduction of P353 million in the east zone.
East zone revenues in the six-month period reached P8.1 billion, as cost and expenses rose 6 percent to P2.3 billion driven primarily by the penalty imposed by Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System in the first quarter of 2019.
Consolidated revenues, including provincial and overseas operations, rose 7 percent to P10.5 billion, driven by increased billed volume and higher average effective tariff in several key business units.
Domestic operations under Manila Water Philippine Ventures posted significant growth, with earnings for the period up 31 percent from the previous year to P303 million. This growth was led by key subsidiaries Laguna Water and Estate Water.
These gains have been partially offset by market challenges experienced in other subsidiaries such as Boracay Water and Clark Water, both registering lower earnings for the period.
The company said that from the water supply challenges early this year, it successfully restored water availability to its customers in the Manila concession.
The company said it implemented network management and efficiency programs, bringing non-revenue water down to an all-time low of 7.5 percent.
Reinforced by a more deliberate network management and optimization program, 24/7 water availability at sufficient pressure was successfully restored to 99 percent of Manila concession customers, it said.
“This has been achieved even in the face of a still significantly reduced raw water supply allocation from Angat Dam―now at only 36 cubic meters per second from the normal 46 cms. These efforts have become the catalyst for equitable water distribution – Manila Water is now working with MWSS and other key government agencies to launch a demand management and water conservation campaign,” it said.
Manila Water said it undertook its own supply augmentation efforts, with the Cardona treatment plant now producing 62 million liters per day, well over the 50 MLD committed capacity. The recommissioning and development of new deep wells continues, with a current total yield of over 50 MLD.
“Looking to the future, Manila Water works closely with MWSS on key components of the Water Supply Master Plan for the East Zone. To date, the MWSS board of trustees has approved four new water source project proposals which are now under review by the MWSS Regulatory Office,” it said.