KUCHING: Utility company Kuching Water Board (KWB) is ready to meet the increasing demand for water in the city and its surrounding areas.
Sarawak Minister of Utilities and Telecommunications Datuk Julaihi Narawi said KWB had made efforts to upgrade the water treatment plants, especially in Batu Kitang, for this purpose.
“This is a right step as not only it is for local consumers but for the industries, especially the Samajaya Free Industrial Zone, in view of the current water demand of 24 million litres per day (MLD), which remains the largest consumer of water in the city,” he said after attending a briefing with KWB on Tuesday (Jan 18).
He was happy with KWB’s efforts in meeting the needs and expectations of the city, which has a population of 711,500 based on the 2020 census, as well as meeting the demand for water from JBALB for Samarahan, Puncak Borneo, Bau, Semariang and other nearby areas.
“However, there is always room for improvement, and I urged KWB, which is currently embarking on an organisational restructuring, to anticipate the growing expectations of the consumers, particularly on the quality and efficiency of its service delivery.
“KWB is also urged to improve its services by adopting digital technologies and to equip its staff with necessary competencies to avert mismatch in demands and services in the near future.”
Meanwhile, according to a statement from the ministry, demand for water was increasing annually in tandem with the development of Kuching city and greater Kuching, in which the growth is about four per cent per annum.
In addition, a few of the industries at Samajaya Free Industrial Zone would be expanding their operations in future and it was estimated that they would require an additional 21 MLD by the end of the year.
With the rollout of various projects under the Rural Water Supply Department (JBALB), the demand from JBALB had increased from 100 MLD to 120 MLD over the past year and it was projected that the demand would further increase to 186 MLD by 2025.