CMA confirms extension to water company appeals

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has confirmed the timeframe to complete the water company final determinations has been extended to mid-February.

As noted in Utility Week last week the body will not complete the re-determinations for Anglian, Bristol, Northumbrian and Yorkshire in their appeals against Ofwat in December as previously timetabled.

The CMA said high levels of stakeholder interest and input led the panel to use more of the allotted time before the statutory deadline of 18 March 2021.

In its response to the CMA’s preliminary findings Ofwat had criticised the regulatory body for hurrying the process to complete by December instead of making full use of the time available.

Following the publication of the CMA’s provisional determinations in late September there has been much speculation about how the decision would affect the price controls for gas networks and electricity transmission companies, which Ofgem is due to publish in early December.

The provisional determinations included a higher cost of capital than set by Ofwat, which the CMA said would incentivise much-needed investment but Ofwat argued provided unnecessarily high returns to shareholders.