FAQs: Facts About the Water Market

The water itself will still be provided from the same source and the waste water services will be provided by the same wholesaler. 


The new deregulated water market will mean that much like the gas and electricity market, customers engage with an approved retailer for billing, meter reads and customer service. 


The majority of your bill is still your wholesale charge.


The Benefits each customer will see will very much depend upon their business and use of water.  However, most businesses could see a reduction in use with some really simple steps. 


The new market will allow for more competition, and retailers will strive to provide customers with better levels of service, streamlining of accounts, more added value and innovation. 


From April 2017, 1.2 million eligible business, charity and public sector customers in England will be able to choose their water and wastewater retailer – joining over 130,000 business customers in Scotland that are already able to switch. See link below. 

(Source Ofwat: www.ofwat.gov.uk/regulated-companies/new-suppliers/becoming-water-supply-sewerage-licensee-wssl/)


Scotland has been enjoying the benefits of an open water marketing since 2008. In England until now, only businesses using more than 5ML (megalitres) on a single site could switch their water supplier.


In Wales, only customers using more than 50 ML (megalitres) per year can switch. There are no plans for the rest of the Welsh water market to open for competition. Now, businesses in England can shop around for their retail services.


The Open Water programme is being led by three partner organisations, Ofwat, Defra and MOSL and more information can be found here www.open-water.org.uk/   

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