Northern Ireland Water makes gains in efficiency

Northern Ireland Water has improved its efficiency – saving £12 million through reduced running costs. According to its annual report for the year up to March, the savings were made […]

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Northern Ireland Water has improved its efficiency – saving £12 million through reduced running costs.

According to its annual report for the year up to March, the savings were made through voluntary redundancies as well as more efficient procurement, sourcing contracts internally and making better use of in-house skills.

It beat the target for operating costs set by the Utility Regulator by £20 million. The targets for water quality, incidents of pollution and leakages were all met as well. The report says leakages fell by 6.25 million litres every day – enough to fill two Olympic swimming pools.

The company claims it delivered the “best ever overall levels of service for customer” and its Overall Performance Assessment score from the Utility Regulator was 198 up from 184 the previous year. Despite this the supplier failed to meet its customer satisfaction target.

It also fell short of all three of its targets for supply interruptions. This was largely blamed on severe weather in March when heavy snowfall cut power to 130,000 homes along with a number of its water pumping stations.

Chief executive Trevor Haslett said: “Our continued investment in the watermains improvement programme will assist in reducing levels of supply interruptions.”

The company spent £162 million in infrastructure during the year and it expects to invest a similar amount over the following 12 months.

Revenue rose to £420 million largely as a result of increased government subsidies. Profit dropped by £4 million to £110 million, but only because of a larger tax bill.