This research for the DG Competition of the European Union provided an independent assessment of possibilities for increasing competition in the water sector, improving regulatory frameworks and how competition rules can contribute to more effective competition.
The application of European Union (EU) competition policy to the water industry poses a number of problems relating to public health, drinking water quality and environmental quality from wastewater discharges.
The tenets of liberalisation need to be fully considered to ensure the industry operates in a competitive manner and delivers high quality services at a fair price. The research examined if these objectives could be achieved in the water industry, through a process of liberalisation that has worked across Europe in other network industries. Also if the same liberalisation process cannot be used, how can the forces of competition be applied nevertheless?
The research was undertaken by WRc and the German economic and environmental research and policy institute, Ecologic.
By developing a coherent set of technical arguments, this research ensures that competition will be introduced to enhance water industry business and provide additional opportunities.