The Association of Table Water Producers in Enugu State has announced a temporary suspension of all water production activities in response to what they describe as the “unbearable” high cost of production.
The decision, revealed in a statement issued by the association’s Chairperson, Tony Edike, and Secretary, Clems Nwamadi, follows an emergency meeting held on February 8, where members discussed the challenges facing water producers in the state.
Effective from February 12 to February 15, all table water producers, including those manufacturing sachets and pet bottles, are instructed to cease production. The move aims to allow the association to seek viable solutions to the numerous challenges confronting its members.
The statement highlights the harsh economic conditions, citing a significant increase of over 500 per cent in the prices of raw materials, including nylon, packaging bags, purifying materials, borehole water procurement, diesel, high electricity tariffs, haulage/transportation, and other maintenance and staff costs. The upward review of fees by state and local government agencies is also noted as a contributing factor.
In response to the crisis, the association plans to sell a bag of sachet water for N300 starting February 16, intending to provide producers with a sustainable operating margin and prevent the collapse of their businesses.
Any member found violating this resolution will face a fine of N200,000 per truck, as enforced by the association’s task force. Members are advised to utilize the shutdown period for equipment maintenance and adhere to standard operating procedures.
The statement concludes with an appeal to the understanding of dealers and consumers, emphasizing the necessity of this action in the face of the industry’s current challenges. As taps run dry in many homes, millions of Nigerians heavily reliant on sachet water are left to cope with the temporary suspension of production in Enugu State.