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Dublin: 10 °C Tuesday 18 December, 2018
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Irish Water: It’s not fair to compare us to 25-year-old UK utilities

The company was responding to reports that its running costs are likely to double that of its UK counterparts.

Image: water drain image via Shutterstock

IRISH WATER HAS hit back at a report that said its running fees would be twice that of UK counterparts.

The Sunday Business Post cited a report from a consulting firm which found projected costs would be double that of similar companies – something that was harshly criticised yesterday.

In a statement released today, however, Irish Water said it has been established to “increase efficiency, reduce costs and delivery improved water services to customers”.

“Water services have suffered from under investment for decades and seven months in, Irish Water has already made proposals to the CER as to how significant efficiencies can be achieved,” it said.

The company said that based on the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) proposals, published two weeks ago, it will have to achieve about €1.4 billion in operating and capital expenditure efficiencies by 2021.

As part of the price control process, Irish Water said it has been compared to UK utilities that are over 25-years-old.

Therefore these utilities are 25 years ahead of Irish Water and have already achieved the very efficiencies that Irish Water has been established to achieve but it has taken 25 years to do it – so comparing the two at this stage is not a like for like comparison. However it does demonstrate one of the reasons why IW has been established – a utility model delivers cost savings.

Irish Water added that it “strongly refutes statements” made by some commentators on the issue as it is “widely known” that costs are scrutinised by an independent regulator.

As part of proposals put forward by the CER two weeks ago, the commission said it would be keeping a close eye on Irish Water costs and proposed an overall reduction in allowed revenue of 8.2%.

Read: Fianna Fáil attacks “gold-plated bonus culture” at Irish Water as costs are revealed>

More: ‘If you install a water meter at our house, we will remove it’>

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