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WUC expects P33m hit from Covid-19

MBONGENI MGUNI
WUC expects P33m hit from Covid-19
The Water Utilities Corporation (WUC) expects Covid-19 to impact its earnings by at least P33 million, adding to the Corporation’s perennial cash flow troubles.

Government stopped the WUC from disconnecting defaulting consumers during the State of Public Emergency as a way of helping Batswana cope with the pandemic. The State of Emergency was recently extended and will now end in March 2021.

As at March 2020, the WUC was owed P801.2 million by various customers, with households accounting for P460 million, government and council P233 million and the balance owed by businesses. 

The WUC’s latest financials, reflecting its performance for the year ended March 2020, show that it posted after tax profits of P75.6 million, helped by a P147.4 million revenue grant from government.

According

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to its financials, the Corporation was headed for a P106 million operating loss, before the government support. In the year to March 2019, the WUC posted a P209 million operating profit.

The WUC has struggled financially in the years since 2009 when the Water Sector Reforms Programme (WSRP) began, requiring the Corporation to take over the supply of water to all urban centres and villages. Prior to the programme, the Corporation’s mandate was limited to urban centres and it regularly posted profits/surpluses, indicating that it was able to meet its operational needs from its own revenues.



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