The Tunisian government has raised the price of drinking water by up to 23 percent, the official gazette said on Tuesday, as the country seeks to reduce subsidies to qualify for IMF help.
Tunisia, which has a shortage of water after years of drought, is under pressure from the International Monetary Fund to cut government subsidies, including of energy, food and water, to qualify for a recovery package the country needs to save public finances from collapse.
The price of water will be unchanged for small consumers, and the highest increase is for tourist facilities, for which the price per cubic meter has increased by 23 percent to 1.990 dinars ($0.6394).
Big consumers also will pay more. Those whose consumption exceeds 40 cubic meters face a 15 percent increase to 1.830 dinars and consumers of between 70 and 100 cubic meters per quarter will pay 17 percent more to 0.930 dinars with immediate effect.
Tunisia has launched water desalination plants to try to make up for the country’s lack of dams and the impact of climate change.