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Water Prices to Increase for Sauna, Bath Houses
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Saunas, large bath houses, foot spas and car washes will pay more for water starting today, as Shanghai steps up efforts to save water.

Inexpensive bath houses that tend to serve people with lower income will be exempt from the price increase, however, according to the Shanghai Price Bureau.

"The (price) adjustment for commercial use of water was introduced to encourage frugal use of resources," the bureau said in a statement posted online.

Previously, bath houses paid 5 yuan (61 US cents) per cubic meter of water.

Saunas and large bath houses that charge 60 yuan or less per person, will see the water price double to 10 yuan a cubic meter.

Those that charge more than 60 yuan will pay 15 yuan for each cubic meter of water.

Foot spas will see the price of water jump from 1.5 yuan to 10 yuan per cubic meter.

"That is too much, but we haven't considered raising our prices for the service," said a manager of a foot spa on Weihai Road, who asked not to be named.

Car washes will see the price of water jump from 1.5 yuan a cubic meter to 5 yuan a cubic meter, but car washes that have water recycling devices will be exempt from the increase.

The city will also increase the price of water from deep wells today in an attempt to limit the use of underground water in order to control land subsidence.

(Shanghai Daily December 1, 2005)

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