Fri | Sep 22, 2017

NWC looking to sell portion of $20 billion debt owed by delinquent customers

Published:Friday | May 12, 2017 | 5:32 PM

The National Water Commission (NWC) says it’s seriously considering selling some of the $20 billion in debt owed by delinquent customers.

President of the NWC, Mark Barnett, says it would then become the responsibility of the entity that purchases the debt to collect from the delinquent customers.

Under the programme being contemplated, the NWC would sell all debts over a certain age in a particular geographic area to interested debt buyers at a discounted rate.

Barnett says the level of delinquency by customers is preventing the NWC from doing many essential improvement and expansion projects.

He also said the sale of debts would be just one of several measures taken by the NWC to improve collections.

According to Barnett, in addition to the number of amnesties and payment incentives recently conducted, the NWC has engaged lawyers to pursue the revenues which have been difficult to collect.

The NWC has also contracted debt collectors and is looking at other creative ways of ensuring that those who receive its service pay their fair share of the cost of delivering those services.

The Government has also indicated that it is moving ahead with plans to privatise the NWC.

Last July, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Horace Chang, said a 36-month timeline has been set for the agency to be placed on the stock market.