Water prices will bubble over next year for Prague residents

City water supplier PVK says the price increase reflects rising energy and construction costs.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 04.11.2022 10:25:00 (updated on 04.11.2022) Reading time: 2 minutes

Prague residents will pay approximately 18.5 percent more for water and sewage next year compared to this year. This could mean a price increase of up to CZK 128.13 per cubic meter. Pražské vodovody a kanalizace (PVK) spokesman Tomáš Mrázek told ČTK the price will increase is mainly due to increasing costs of the company.

The PVK website says that the average daily water consumption per person in 2021 was 113 liters in Prague, whereas in other Czech regions the daily water consumption per person was lower.

If the price increases by 18.5 percent, the price per cubic meter would rise by CZK 20 compared to this year. This year, Prague consumers paid CZK 108.13 per cubic meter, roughly 6 percent more year-on-year.

Mrázek told ČTK that this year, in addition to a rise in energy costs, PVK also has to pay more for chemicals and construction work and materials. “Despite the savings we made this year, these items unfortunately have to be reflected in the final price of water and sewage,” he said.

At the beginning of the year, Prague City Hall approved an investment plan for water management infrastructure, which includes an increase in water and sewerage by 2 percentage points above the rate of annual inflation.

Water prices have been on a rising trend. Czech Statistical Office (ČSÚ) data shows that in September prices of heat and hot water rose by 21.1 percent year on year, water supply by 5.3 percent, and sewage collection by 6.4 percent.

In a 2021 study on water prices in European cities by the Holidu search engine for vacation rentals, Prague ranks as the most expensive of all Central and Eastern European cities. The Czech capital was the 13th-most expensive out of the 36 cities in the ranking. Oslo, Stuttgart, and Copenhagen occupied the top three positions.

The Czech Republic, as well as most of the rest of the world, has been experiencing a wave of high inflation due to the war in Ukraine and other factors. In September, inflation in Czechia was at 18 percent, the highest level since 1993.

PVK is 51 percent owned by French-based conglomerate Veolia and 49 percent by city-owned company Pražská vodohospodářská společnost. PVK operates a 4,444-kilometer-long water supply network and a 4,760-kilometer sewer network. Last year, it had 93,521 contract customers.

According to a customer survey released yesterday by PVK, customer satisfaction with PVK’s services is at 95 percent, while 92 percent are satisfied with the quality of drinking water. The survey did not ask about satisfaction with PVK prices.

Water isn’t the only utility to increase in price. Last summer, the Czech Republic had Europe's most expensive electricity when adjusted for purchasing power. Recently released data from the EU statistical office Eurostat showed that Czech households experienced the highest price increase in electricity in the EU, with electricity prices rising by 62 percent year-on-year from January to June.

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