Amjasa Cost saving measures


AMJASA to apply several cost- saving measures in order to invest in improvements to the network

The public company wants to manage the comprehensive water cycle and offer supply to other municipalities

Javea. Monday, 24 October 2011.

The Board of Directors of the Municipal Water Company, AMJASA, announced cost-saving measures they have begun to apply in order to improve the company’s finances and invest in improvements to the water supply, this way lowering the fees to the end-users. According to mayor Jose Chulvi, the board is taking on this challenge "intensely, eagerly and enthusiastically".

The Managing Director, Josep Lluis Henarejos, explained that the company’s expenditures focus in three areas: the fixed costs of the desalination plant (which can not be avoided), investments and purchase of water. In this regard, an agreement has been reached with Acciona (concessionaire of the desalination plant) that will reduce the purchase costs of water in exchange for permitting a new schedule for the production plant. So from now on Acciona will disconnect the desalination plant during the day and, doubling the number of racks, they will carry out the production of water during the night, thus saving on electricity bills with the nightly rate. This operating model will be tested for 15 days to prove its effectiveness and if proven viable, will be used during the winter without affecting the quality of service. In return, AMJASA will not be obligated to purchase as much water and will be able to combine the water supply with the water extracted from the wells they own.

Another of the measures applied in this new stage has been the change in service contracts, which will permit a savings of between 40,000 and 50,000 euros, in addition to a new work schedule for the maintenance brigade that will increase efficiency. Board member José Javier Mata outlined the reorganization, which consists of reducing to two the members of the repair team and seeking greater efficiency that will enable staff to take on more functions, such as maintaining facilities. The most important reorganizational measure is the creation of a team dedicated solely to leakages.

The control of leakages along with the renewal of hundreds of obsolete metres are the keys to both improving the water supply network and reducing the 40% of the annual supply that AMJASA is unable to bill, according to recent reports. Despite this, the Managing Director has confirmed that the account forecast for the fiscal year 2012 is a profit of between 140,000 and 150,000 euros thanks to cost-saving measures and, above all, the lack of rain, which has increased the demand for water consumption.

Another short-term challenge facing the board is improving customer service and the company’s image. In this regard, Board Member Simon Montilla indicated that they are working on developing a new corporate identity, as well as a website that will announce breakdowns in the network and allow customer service via chat. The idea is to convert it into a virtual customer service portal, where customers can consult their bills, make payments, or log complaints with a secure password.

The comprehensive water cycle
As for larger-scale challenges, Councillor for Water, Paco Torres, offered details of the efforts being made in order to take on the management of the water cycle. At present, AMJASA is only responsible for the provision, while the Town Hall manages the sewage system and a specialized company manages the wastewater treatment plant. An AMJASA technician will now be stationed in the Technical Office to carry out a thorough inventory of the sewage system in order to connect new urbanisations.

 "As for the reutilisation of water, it simply does not exist. It is dumped into the sea because we lack the tertiary cycle," Torres said with regret. He also informed of a meeting scheduled this week at the Confederation Júcar, as well as other pending appointments with the Generalitat and the Department of Environment to address this issue.

Finally, the Board of Directors of AMJASA has reiterated its readiness to broaden its horizons and begin supplying water to more municipalities. With good reason, as it is the only public company in the Marina Alta, with 37 years of experience and owner the only desalination plant in the area. Moreover, the prediction of future dry spells and the difficult economic situation, making it very difficult for other plants to be built nearby, are points in favour. "We have to value our desalination plant, especially since it cost us so much money. We must not forget that the greater the production, the lower the cost per litre, which will affect the rates to the end-users" Josep Lluis Henarejos concluded.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License