KOTA BARU: The endless water supply woes in Kelantan have not only affected the people but also challenged small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in their daily business.
The operator of a soy sauce factory in Melor said the lack of clean water supply had been giving her problems since last year.
“Last year, the water supply (by Air Kelantan Sdn Bhd) was inconsistent,” said Halmehera Mat Salleh, 41.
“I have to buy clean water to process my products. For cleaning works, I would have to use well water near the factory,” she said.
She claimed that the situation worsened this year, compelling her to prepare her raw materials, such as minced onions, at home before sending them to the factory.
Halmehera said she had to face tough challenges due to the lack of water and had to bear the cost of buying water to ensure quality and hygienic products.
However, the signing of the Kelantan Water Supply Services Industry Restructuring deal between the federal and state governments on Sept 14 seemed to bring new hopes.
“We are very hopeful the problem will end soon, not only for entrepreneurs like us but also for the people of Kelantan,” she said of the agreement which would benefit about 1.6 million consumers.
Duck breeder Noor Hisyam Abd Aziz, 35, said clean water supply was one of the essentials needed to produce quality farm animals, especially during the dry spell.
Noor Hisyam, who reared 3,000 ducks on his farm in Tanah Merah, said the source of water from a well was inadequate to irrigate the five ponds built on the farm.
Universiti Malaysia Kelantan Jeli campus director Prof Datuk Dr Ibrahim Che Omar said sufficient water and electricity supply were vital to attracting investors to the state.
“I believe through this agreement, Kelantan can lure more investors to the state in future,” he said, who is also the Agriculture and Food Cluster Committee member of the National Professors Council. — Bernama