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Water companies announce investment plans

The majority of English and Welsh water companies have asked to increase their construction spend between 2010 to 2015 according to their draft business plans published today.

Each water company today submitted their draft spending plans to Ofwat to allow the water regulator to run the rule over the plans before deciding how much it will allow each company to spend.

In its plan submitted to Ofwat, United Utilities said it wanted to spend £4 billion in total over the period with £1.6 billion going on water services and another £2.4 billion being put into the improvement of waste water.

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water announced its plans to invest £1.5 billion on its infrastructure between 2010 and 2015 including spending £153 million to improve water treatment.

Northumbrian Water, which also runs Essex and Suffolk Water, plans to invest £1.3 billion on water sewage services – this is a 22 per cent increase on the investment made in 2005 to 2010 – while Anglican Water has announced a £2.5 billion investment programme.

And £610 million of the total £1.9 billion that Yorkshire Water intends to invest will go in to the waste water treatment assets in the region.

Wessex Water has allocated £1.2 billion for the improvement of waste water and water facilities in the region while South West Water wants to invest £813 million over the period but does not have any big ticket items on its list.

South West Water chief executive Chris Loughlin said: "This plan does not propose a major infrastructure investment such as we have seen in the past 18 years, with nearly £2 billion invested in putting in place often first-time sewage treatment.”

Essex-based Tendering Hundred Water plan to invest £22m over the period and have outlined a plan to build a new reservoir and replace 30 km of water mains in its region

A final decision on what investment is made and water prices will be made by Ofwat in autumn 2009.