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Water industry

This page is currently under review and the content will be updated shortly.

The water industry side focusses on the regulation of water and sewerage undertakers and the legislation relates to the appointment areas of those undertakers, being wholly or mainly in Wales (where it is a matter for Senedd Cymru and the Welsh Government) or wholly or mainly in England (where it is a matter for the UK Parliament and UK Government). The main Act in the area is the Water Industry Act 1991 which places duties on local authorities and water and sewerage companies in relation to water supply and waste water matters.

Licensed water suppliers

Non household customers who are likely to use at least 50 megalitres of water a year may choose their water supplier from a range of new companies. New companies can supply water to eligible customers once they have a licence from Ofwat.

They can do so in one of two ways:

  • Retail licence

A water supply licence to purchase a wholesale supply of water from an appointed water company and use its supply system to deliver water to customers’ premises.

  • Combined licence

To deliver water to eligible customers through and appointed water company’s supply system.

Existing water companies who are appointed under the Water Industry Act 1991 can compete by setting up associate companies, Their licence will allow them to operate anywhere in England and Wales, except in the supply system of their associate water company.

Published on
Last updated
17 June 2021