Ofwat proposals to cut water bills by £1bn

Plans to remove barriers for new companies to enter the water market have been proposed. That could reduce bills for customers by up to £1 billion by 2020, according to […]

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By Jacqueline Echevarria

Plans to remove barriers for new companies to enter the water market have been proposed.

That could reduce bills for customers by up to £1 billion by 2020, according to Ofwat.

Under the proposals to open up the market for energy from wastewater solids, the regulator suggests separating binding price controls for sludge and water resources.

It also recommends creating an information platform to help new firms offer cheaper and better services than existing companies.

They also include enabling third parties access networks by setting prices to use the water treatment and distribution networks of companies in England.

The regulator has launched a consultation on its proposals which will close on 10th February next year.

It stated if the water sector in England and Wales is to meet future challenges and deepen trust and confidence, it will need to change.

Cathryn Ross, Ofwat Chief Executive said: “Supplies are already stretched in areas where the population is rising. We want to kick start water trading where this will help keep bills down and stop us taking too much water from our rivers. We also want to de-regulate to free up scope for companies to make better use of sewage sludge to help meet their own and the country’s energy needs.

“If we can encourage companies to innovate and to truly understand what customers want now and in the future, we will be in a strong position to maintain trust and confidence in this vital public service.”