- Wastewater is discharged untreated or insufficiently treated.
- Sewage collection systems are sometimes inadequate, non-functional and require adjustments to centralised wastewater treatment.
- Existing wastewater treatment plants have not been developed in line with the quality of treatment required by EU directives.
- Disposed faecal and sewage sludge is not sufficiently treated.
- The tariffs do not cover the costs and do not allow water supply companies (WSC) to maintain, modernise or extend their infrastructure.
The aim is to ensure reliable and safe sanitation and treatment in accordance with EU standards at cost-covering and socially acceptable tariffs and to improve profitability and management capacities of WSCs.
The programme is carried out in two phases:
- During the first phase municipalities and their WSCs have to meet certain efficiency and performance criteria in order to qualify for the second phase (performance-oriented approach).
- The second phase involves basic investments in wastewater collection and treatment, in particular in the construction of wastewater treatment plants and rehabilitation and extension of the sewerage network.
- The cities of Vranje and Kruševac and their WSCs have qualified for the second phase.
- WSCs have introduced cost-covering prices, including a minimum budget of 30 euros per house connection for maintenance.
- WSCs have increased their fee collection efficiency to over 90%.
- The WSC is able to provide more than 170,000 citizens with drinking water over the long term and to collect and treat the wastewater of more than 150,000 citizens.
- Project planning and implementation capacities have been improved in line with international standards.
- Contribution to EU accession and implementation of EU standards in the wastewater sector.