The powers and functions of NIA under RA 3601, as amended by PD 552 and PD 1702, include the following:

1. To investigate, study, and develop all available water resources in the country, primarily for irrigation purposes;

2. To plan, design, construct, and/or improve all types of irrigation projects and appurtenant structures;

3. To operate, maintain, and administer all national irrigation systems (NIS);

4. To supervise the operation, maintenance, and repair, or otherwise, administer temporarily all communal and pump irrigation systems constructed, improved, and/or repaired wholly or     partially with government funds;

5. To delegate the partial or full management of NIS to duly organized cooperatives or associations;

6. To construct multiple-purpose water resources projects designed primarily for irrigation, and secondarily for hydraulic power development and/or other uses such as flood control, drainage, land reclamation, domestic water supply, roads and highway construction, and reforestation, among others, Provided, that the plans, designs, and the construction thereof, shall be undertaken in coordination with the agencies concerned;

7. To charge and collect from the beneficiaries of the water from all irrigation systems constructed by or under its administration, such fees or administration charges as may be necessary to:

  • cover the cost of operation, maintenance, and insurance;
  • recover the costs of construction within a reasonable period of time to the extent consistent with government policy;
  • recover funds or portions thereof expended for the construction and/or rehabilitation of communal irrigation systems (CIS) which shall accrue to a special fund for irrigation development.