Water UK comments on water prices

The water regulators and the government are inviting stakeholders to consult on water company plans for 2005 to 2010. Water UK, the industry association representing water companies, offers its comments on the situation.

Aug 29th, 2003

Aug. 29, 2003 -- The water regulators and the government are inviting stakeholders to consult on water company plans for 2005 to 2010. Water UK, the industry association representing water companies, offers its comments on the situation.
What's going on?

The joint statement was a timely summary of the price review process and the parts played by government and the different regulators.

The seven signatories - Ofwat, Defra, Welsh Assembly Government, Drinking Water Inspectorate, Environment Agency, English Nature, Countryside Council for Wales - are inviting stakeholder groups to comment on water company draft business plans for 2005-10.

Their findings, which Water UK hopes will be shared with companies and the public, should provide useful insight into the views of those with a professional interest in water and the water environment.

The findings should complement those from a national survey of customers to be carried out in September for the same regulators, in this case alongside consumer and environmental groups and the companies themselves.

The draft plans, the consultation and the customer research provide a key input to decisions by government in early 2004.

Company draft business plans

The draft plans are scenarios based on different assumptions about how much companies should invest during 2005 to 2010. They provide the first estimates of the costs of alternative environmental, quality and other legal obligations government may require companies to deliver.

One of the plans will present the company's preferred strategy for action it judges necessary to meet both its legal and its customer service obligations. All of them will include the level of bill the company believes it would have to charge customers under different assumptions about these obligations.

In the period 2005-2010 companies will need to invest in new assets to deliver improvements to water quality and the environment required by law; and in existing assets, where urgent repairs or replacements are needed to ensure they don't fail.

Going public

Water companies will make public summaries of their draft plans on or soon after Friday 29 August. A national overview and summary will be provided by Water UK on the morning of that day.

More information from

Robert Weeden, Economic Regulation Adviser,
rweeden@water.org.uk

020 7344 1842 or
Barrie Clarke, Director of Communication

bclarke@water.org.uk
0200 7344 1804 (out of hours pager 07669 130685)


More information: http://www.water.org.uk


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