The daily newspaper Die Welt reported an international study by NUS Consulting placed German water prices at the top of several countries – with a German paying nearly five times as much as an American for the most basic good there is.
Industrial customers in Germany pay on average €1.91 per cubic metre of water before taxes. The same amount costs €1.85 in Belgium, €1.27 in France and €1.05 in Australia – a country with chronic water shortages. The price in America is an unbeatable €.047 per cubic metre – and it would still be a bargain there taking into account the weak US dollar.
NUS Consulting said the main reason for Germany's expensive water was not that there wasn't enough of it or that it was expensive to treat, but rather that German municipalities were responsible for setting prices.
“Since water prices can set by the municipalities, the higher prices are used to subsidize local projects that would otherwise have to be paid for with tax money,” the survey said according to Die Welt.
Not that it's much solace to know that you're paying more than the rest of the world for that glass of water from the tap, but the consultants said they expected water prices in Germany were unlikely to rise much this year as they would in other countries.