Water utility Severn Trent warns about impact of nationalisation

British water utility Severn Trent has reiterated warnings about the impact of any future nationalisation of the industry on its strategic goals.

Liv Garfield
Liv Garfield

“The re-nationalisation of the water industry remains a possibility in the event of a change of Government, and any associated changes in Government policy may fundamentally impact our ability to deliver the Group’s strategic objectives, impacting shareholder value,” Severn Trent said.

The company said it was engaging with the government, Members of Parliament, the Welsh government, regulators and other stakeholders about the future shape and direction of the water sector.

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Severn Trent laid out its view on the financial and practical costs of re-nationalisation in its mid-year results last November.

Severn Trent also said its preparations for a no-deal Brexit are well advanced, including a “Brexit Steering Committee” to oversee the contingency and scenario planning necessary to operate effectively if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

Liv Garfield, Chief Executive, Severn Trent Plc, said: “This has been a year where our teams have really stepped up, whether in response to customer needs in the face of one of the hottest and driest summers we’ve seen or by being named by Ofwat as one of the top companies in the sector when we received fast-track status for our future plans.

“At the heart of all of that is our drive to succeed for all of our stakeholders, which is shown in the results we’re announcing today. They demonstrate not only that we can deliver for our investors but also that we’re putting ourselves at the heart of the communities in which we live and work by building a lasting legacy for future generations.

“Whether that’s spending time in our region’s primary schools exploring the importance of using water the right way, bringing an employee’s idea to life that finds an innovative new way to improve our services, or the investment we make day after day in maintaining our assets. By balancing the needs of everyone in this way, we are confident we are doing the right things for all of our stakeholders.”

Group turnover was £1,767 million, an increase of 4.2 per cent on the previous year.