Malaysia is facing one of its worst droughts in decades, with cloud seeding becoming necessary to ensure there is rain for people and crops. The drought has focused attention on longstanding problems, both economic and political, with water management in the country’s industrial heartland.
Selangor is Malaysia’s richest state, accounting for 20% of the country’s economy, yet it suffers periodic water shortages. Controlled by the opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PKR), the state also supplies water to the administrative capital Putrajaya and the capital city Kuala Lumpur.
It has been six years since the Water Services Industry Act, which pushed for the restructuring of the water sector, came into effect. As part of the process, the federal government set up Pengurusan Aset Air Bhd (PAAB) to oversee ownership of water assets and plan future development to ensure adequate supply. Many states have handed over their water assets to PAAB but they remain in charge of water distribution.
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