Water today, water tomorrow
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Site last updated on 1 October 2015

The economic regulator of the water and sewerage sectors in England and Wales

Ofwat (The Water Services Regulation Authority) is the economic regulator of the water sector in England and Wales. Our role is to help the sector build trust and confidence with customers, the environment and wider society. Find out more about us.

Hot topics

Thames Tideway Tunnel licence award

We have confirmed the award of a licence to Bazalgette Tunnel Limited to deliver the 25km Thames Tideway Tunnel to deal with the problem of the amount of untreated sewage going into the River Thames. A new process for awarding the licence has resulted in significant savings for customers, against previous estimates, with Thames Water’s bills expected to remain at the current level, before inflation, until at least 2020.

Find out more about our plans for the next five years

Our interactive five year business plan sets what we intend to do during 2015-16 to 2019-20 to help increase customers’ and wider society’s trust and confidence in their water and wastewater services ? and how we will work to do it.
Ofwat's five-year business plan: 2015-16 to 2019-20

TapReferral of Bristol’s final determination, and South West's acquisition of Bournemouth to CMA

In December we set limits on the prices companies can charge between 2015 and 2020. Our decision meant that average bills in England and Wales are due to fall by around five per cent in real terms by 2020, while at the same time seeing improved levels of service. All but one company accepted our final determination. Bristol Water asked for its final determination to be referred to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) for review. We have now done this. The process is now taken forward by the CMA who will open Bristol’s final determination. Updates on the case, including our opening statement, are available from the CMA.

In April 2015 Pennon Group plc, the parent company of South West Water, acquired Bournemouth Water. As the turnover of both water companies is above £10 million this merger was automatically referred for investigation by the Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA must decide if the merger will prejudice our ability to make comparisons between water companies and if so, what action must be taken to remedy, mitigate or prevent the prejudice or any adverse effect. Updates on the case, including our submission, are available from the CMA.

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