Ofwat scupper Thames Water's plans for 8% price hike
Those exciting people at Britain's water industry regulator - Ofwat - are not having it that Thames Water can just put their prices up by 8% for no good reason, and have told them as such.
"We said we would challenge Thames Water's request," said Ofwat's chief regulation officer, Sonia Brown. "We have looked at the details and do not believe the current evidence justifies an increase in bills."
Thames Water look after 14 million customers in the capital and South East, and last August, they submitted the request to increase prices above the limits that had been agreed in 2009 because of 'rising costs'.
However, Ofwat pointed out that Thames has underspent on sewer and sewage improvement schemes, which is unacceptable if customers are going to be looking at a £30 increase to a bill that already averages out at £354 annually.
Ofwat said it would take a final decision on the increase in November after a some technical consultation, which basically means that Thames Water are allowed to submit new evidence if they have any.
Looks like this is a shot across the bows to any of the other water companies thinking of putting their prices up.