The detailed report on South Africa’s water sector describes current conditions, provides information and statistics on the basic supply and quality of water, and discusses factors influencing the success of the sector. The report profiles 41 players, including the municipalities in every province as well as water service providers such as Johannesburg Water, the Midvaal Water Company and the Greater Nelspruit Utility Company, which provide services on behalf of municipalities. Also profiled are a number of private companies including Aveng Water (Pty) Ltd, which offers mine and wastewater treatment and assists municipalities in providing long-term potable water supplies for domestic consumption, and Bureau Veritas Testing and Inspections South Africa (Pty) Ltd, which has three laboratories involved in the testing of water, air, soil and waste.
The Collection, Purification, Testing, and Distribution of Water
Revenue accruing from water services was almost R34bn in 2014, with income from the sale of water totalling R25.5bn and the provision of sanitation services contributing R8.1bn. The capital value of all installed water infrastructure is R1,220bn and the sector directly employs approximately 12,000 people.
Operating at Near Capacity
The National Water Resource Strategy revised by the Department of Water and Sanitation in 2013 emphasises that water is a basic right and that all South Africans should have reliable and equitable access to the resource. Although there has been an average improvement of 20% in the provision of basic water supply and access to basic sanitation since 1994, the water system has been operating at near capacity since 2015 and expansion is required to keep abreast of growing demand. However, analysts report that the sector is beset by difficulties and performance is held back by municipal inefficiencies and a lack of quality information.