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Apr 12, 2021

Approximately $3 Million in Arrears; BWSL Talks Amnesty

While we were with the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Belize Water Services Limited, News Five asked about the impact that COVID-19 has had on the utility company. Thousands of households lost their income when the pandemic hit Belize and many have been struggling to make ends meet. Cornelio Acosta Junior says that in one year, the arrears to the company ballooned to over three million dollars. An amnesty programme has been introduced to help with the collection of some of this money.

 

Cornelio Acosta Jr.

Cornelio Acosta Jr., Chairman, B.W.S.L.

“We’ve seen where we had arrears annually amounting to about two, three hundred thousand dollars now amounting to almost three million dollars. We have a new amnesty programme ongoing right now. Thankfully, we’ve seen a good uptake, about fifteen percent in about three weeks which is good. But nevertheless it has impacted our revenues. Also we have seen a decrease in terms of financing from I.F.I.s so we are looking at new opportunities where revenue can come into the company and where we could explore for future financing.  What we are looking at is essentially a payment plan for the arrears that have been generated within the past year along with that, you’re also getting a ten percent discount or a ten percent off the arrears amount. We’ve also included for people that pay their bills on time, there is a five percent relief for them also. So whenever you pay your bill, you get a five percent discount on that. So that’s one way we’ve tried to reach out. Of course, we’ve avoided disconnecting customers.”


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