UK Water Tariffs Surge: Global Water Tariff Survey 2023 Reveals UK 8.36% Average Price Increase, With Anticipation of Further Increases in 2024


OXFORD, ENGLAND - October 12, 2023 ( Global Water Intelligence (GWI)'s recently released Global Water Tariff Survey 2023 sheds light on the state of the UK water sector.

The average monthly tariff in the UK currently stands at $75.12 (£59.52). The average increase between 2022 and 2023 for UK tariffs was 8.36%, compared to 3.83% last year. This increase exceeds the 2023 Western European regional average of 5.2%. Notably, the city with highest increase was London, reaching 11.58%. However, the most expensive UK city for water services is Exeter, where residents face a combined tariff of $106.89 per month.

Stormwater tariffs in the UK account for only around 10% of the total tariff on average. Wastewater in London is currently being charged at a lower rate than water due to a penalty applied to Thames Water for poor sewage services. This year, UK utilities have come under fire due to sewage spillages in rivers and on beaches, which have gained public attention. Rates across the UK are expected to rise steeply in 2024, with water utilities advocating for a 40% increase to address environmental pollution issues and meet capital requirements imposed by regulators.

UK water companies plan to invest £96 billion from 2025 to 2030, an 88% increase compared to the previous five years. These investments will be allocated to infrastructure upgrades, including a 28% reduction in leakage, elimination of an average of 140,000 sewage spills per year, and the removal of a million tonnes of phosphorus from English rivers. Additionally, these funds will support the construction of 28 wetlands, the development of up to 10 new reservoirs, and major national water transfer schemes, with the overarching goal of improving water quality and biodiversity, as well as aiding vulnerable customers.

To finance these improvements, water companies propose increasing bills in England by £84 per annum in 2025, rising to £156 in 2030. The specific figures may vary by company based on local circumstances. The proposed increases represent a 19% to 35% rise over average 2023-2024 water bills - potentially higher if inflation persists. The negotiations between Ofwat, the water regulator in England and Wales, and the water companies will focus on the ambition, quality, and detail of their plans.

The Global Water Tariff Survey 2023 report offers over a decade's worth of tariff data on UK utilities, which can be dissected into water, wastewater, and stormwater segments. This data allows for comprehensive comparisons between various cities across the UK, providing insight into the sector's trajectory.

The Global Water Tariff Survey is available as part of a subscription to GWI Magazine. Visit: for more information.

Notes to Editors:

Journalists with valid press credentials wishing to access the full dataset should request press access from Lydia Flock at

The Global Water Tariff Survey is the leading repository of global water tariff data and analysis, featuring water & wastewater tariff profiles from 572 cities and 188 countries. It is updated annually by Global Water Intelligence (GWI). Global Water Intelligence are covering the latest news, insights, and analysis on the UK water sector on their blog (

The Global Water Tariff Survey is available to all GWI Magazine subscribers who can download it from To purchase a subscription to GWI Magazine, contact

About Global Water Intelligence (GWI):

GWI researches and publishes business data and information about water markets worldwide. Based in Oxford, UK, it also has offices in Singapore and USA (Austin, Texas), and has researchers and office staff in many other countries. It publishes three subscription titles and a free weekly GWI Briefing email ( and around four individual reports per year on particular water sectors/geographic regions. It also organises one of the major events for the water industry each year: The Global Water Summit.

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