Willingness-to-Pay for Potable Water in the Accra-Tema Metropolitan Area of Ghana


A major problem confronting the Accra-Tema Metropolitan area of Ghana is the provision of potable water supply. One reason for this occurrence is the inability of Ghana Water Company Limited to meet the growing demand. This can partly be attributable to the ineffective pricing by the PURC which is below cost recovery levels. In this study we investigate household’s willingness-to-pay (WTP) for potable water supply together with the factors that determine WTP by using the Contingent Valuation Method (CVM). The results indicate that households in the Accra-Tema metropolis are willing to pay on the average GH¢0.10 for a bucket (17.5 litres) of water which is about 7 times more than what they are paying currently. Analysis of the factors that influence households WTP indicates that income, time spent to fetch water from existing sources, level of education, sanitation facility, perceived quality of current water supply, sex of the respondent and marital status are the main factors influencing households WTP for potable water supply services in the metropolis. We recommend that government improve water supply and increase tariffs since people are prepared to pay more for potable water supply as well as reduce inefficiencies that exist in the sector.

Share and Cite:

Twerefou, D. , Tutu, K. , Botchway, E. and Darkwah, S. (2015) Willingness-to-Pay for Potable Water in the Accra-Tema Metropolitan Area of Ghana. Modern Economy, 6, 1285-1296. doi: 10.4236/me.2015.612122.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] World Health Organisation (2006) Country Health System Fact Sheet 2006, Ghana.
[2] Abraham, E.T., van Rooijen, D., Cofie, O. and Raschid-Sally, L. (2007) Planning Urban Water-Dependent Livelihood Opportunities for the Poor in Accra, Ghana. SWITCH Scientific Meeting, International Water Management Institute, Accra.
[3] WaterAid (2005) National Water Sector Assessment, Ghana. www.wateraid.org.
[4] Labite H., van der Steen, P. and Lens P. (2008) Analysis of Health Benefits versus Costs of Interventions in the Urban Water System in Accra, Using Quantitative Microbial Risks Assessment. WaterMill Working Paper Series, Vol. 14, 8.
[5] Brookshire, D.S. and Whittington, D. (1993) Water-Resources Issues in the Developing-Countries. Water Resources Research, 29, 1883-1888. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/92WR02988
[6] Pearce, D.W., Adger, W.N., Brown, K., Cervigni, R. and Moran, D. (1993) Mexico Forestry and Conservation Sector Review: Sub study of Economic Valuation of Forests. Report by SCERGE, University of East Anglia and University College London, for the World Bank, Latin America and the Caribbean Country Department LA2, Washington DC.
[7] World Bank Water Demand Research Team (1993) The Demand for Water in Rural Areas: Determinants and Policy Implications. The World Bank Research Observer, 8, 47-70.
[8] Boadu, F.O. (1992) Contingent Valuation for Household Water in Rural Ghana. Journal of American Economics, 43, 548-465. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1477-9552.1992.tb00239.x
[9] Jordan, J.L. and Elnagheeb, A.H. (1993) WTP for Improvement in Drinking Water Quality. Water Resources Research, 29, 237-245. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/92WR02420
[10] Aguilar, M. and Sterner, T. (1995) WTP for Potable Communal Water Services. EEU Working Papers, Gothenburg University, Gothenburg.
[11] Bah, I. (1997) Estimating Household’s Valuation for Potable Water Supply Service in Urban Areas: The Case of Freetown, Sierra Leone. Unpublished Master’s Dissertation, University of Botswana, Gaborone.
[12] Adjei, P.O. (1999) WTP for Potable Water Services: Contingent Valuation Method for Greater Accra Metropolitan Area. An Unpublished Master’s Thesis, University of Ghana, Accra.
[13] Calkins, P., Larue, B. and Vézina, M. (2002) WTP for Drinking Water in the Sahara: The Case of Douentza in Mali. Cahiers d’économie et sociologie rurales, No. 64, 38-56.
[14] Appau-Danso, E. (2004) WTP for Potable Water Supplies in Rural Communities. A Case Study of the Asante Akim South District. An Unpublished Master’s Thesis, University of Ghana, Accra.
[15] Fissha, M. (2006) Household Demand for Potable Water Service in Urban Areas: The Case of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Unpublished Master’s Thesis, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa.
[16] Adepoju, A.A. and Omonona, B.T. (2009) Determinants of WTP for Potable Water Supply in Osogbo Metropolis; Osun State, Nigeria. Research Journal of Social Sciences, 4, 1-6.
[17] Noor, J.A. and Siddiqi, W. (2009) Estimation of WTP for Improvement in Drinking Water Quality: A Study of Wasa, Lahore. Economics Bulletin, 29, A19.
[18] Olajuyigbe, A.E. and Fasakin, J.O. (2010) Citizens’ WTP for Potable Sustainable Water Supply in a Medium-Sized City in South Western Nigeria. Current Research Journal of Social Sciences, 2, 41-50.
[19] Asenso-Okyere, W.K., Osei-Akoto, I. and Appiah, E.N. (1997) WTP for Health Insurance in a Developing Economy. A Pilot Study of the Informal Sector of Ghana Using Contingent Valuation. Health Policy, 42, 223-237. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0168-8510(97)00069-9
[20] Afroz, R., Hassan, M.N., Awang, M. and Ibrahim, N.A. (2005) WTP for Air Quality Improvement in Klang Valley, Malaysia. American Journal of Environmental Sciences, 1, 194-201.
[21] Rodriguez, E., Lacaze, V. and Lupin, B. (2007) WTP for Organic Food in Argentina: Evidence from a Consumer Survey. School of Economic and Social Sciences, Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata, Mar del Plata.
[22] Asfaw, A., Gustafsson-Wright, E. and van der Gaag, J. (2008) WTP for Health Insurance: An Analysis of Potential Market for New Low Cost Health Insurance Products in Namibia. AIID RS 08-01/2.
[23] Asafo-Adjaye, J. and Dzator, J. (2003) WTP for Malaria Insurance: A Case Study of Households in Ghana Using the Contingent Valuation Method. Economic Analysis and Policy, 33, 31-47.
[24] Cranfield, J.A.L. and Magnusson, E. (2003) Canadian Consumer’s Willingness-to-Pay for Pesticide Free Food Products: An Ordered Probit Analysis. International Food and Agribusiness Management Review, 6, 13-30.
[25] Greene, W.H. (2008) Econometrics Analysis. Sixth Edition, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River.
[26] Whittington, D., Briscoe, J., Mu, X. and Barron, W. (1990) Estimating the WTP for Water Services in Developing Countries: A Case Study of the Use of Contingent Valuation Surveys in Southern Haiti. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 38, 293-311. http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/451794

Copyright © 2023 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.