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Regulatory reform needed as £96bn water investment plan unveiled

Our reaction to water company strategies to deliver for customers in England and Wales over the five years to 2030

Water companies have today submitted new plans to the regulator Ofwat which would aim to reduce leakage by 28% in England, deliver up to 10 new reservoirs and remove a million tonnes of phosphorous from English rives in the five years to 2030. 

The proposals represent the largest investment ever made by the water industry, and the largest investment programme in water in Europe.

Responding to the development, Global Infrastructure Investor Association (GIIA) Corporate Affairs Director Simon Montague, said: “The scale of investment needed to modernise water infrastructure is unprecedented.

"The short-term regulatory priority of reducing bills has come at the expense of enabling sufficient capital investment to address longer term requirements.

"Without a regulatory framework that enables greater investment, we will simply be storing up more expensive problems for the next generation.” 

“Investors stand ready to play their part, but policymakers and regulators must take responsibility for putting in place the right framework to enable the investment needed. 

"Working together, we can build the resilient water and sewage systems that meet the future needs of customers and protect the environment, but this will require a shift from all involved.”