People have a right to water, but that does not mean that it has to be free, according to the head of the OECD.
Secretary General Angel Gurria has welcomed the introduction of water charges, but said they are still among the lowest in the group of countries.
Mr Gurria said the low cost of charges is a political move by the Government which is taking money from other departments:
He said: "One has a right to water, we have even promoted that there is a universal right to water but doesn't necessarily say that it has to be free or that it has to be below cost.
"Because if it is below cost and you are trying to make every other part of the budget more efficient, that means you have to subsidise that with something else."