Utility Capital Expenditure - UK - July 2015
“The approach to infrastructure investment is in transition across the utility industry. Whereas spending was previously mainly output-driven, future investment decisions will be increasingly centred on innovation, asset optimisation and long-term outcomes. Operators will also be challenged by rising pressure from industry regulators to reduce costs for consumers, which highlights the importance of cost efficiencies in capital investment decisions.”
– Claudia Preedy - B2B Analyst
This report will explore the following key questions with regard to Utility Capital Expenditure in the UK:
- What are the key drivers for capital investment in the water and sewerage industry?
- What are the key drivers for network investment in the electricity transmission and distribution sector?
- What are the drivers for capital investment in the gas supply and distribution industry?
- How will changes in the regulatory environment affect the approach to capital investment?
- How does environmental legislation and regulations affect the utility industry?
- What are the expenditure plans for the current regulatory control period in the various utility sectors?
Although changes in the regulatory framework are likely to restrict traditional network investment, they will also provide opportunities for the supply industry, particularly for companies offering innovative solutions and new technologies that facilitate efficient and optimised asset management. The strongest growth is expected in the energy networks sector, driven by rising electricity demand versus the closure of generation capacity, changes in the energy mix and the growth of low carbon technologies.
Following the privatisation and deregulation of UK utilities, the government appointed industry regulators to determine the prices they are permitted to charge customers. This takes into account planned expenditure to meet both UK and European legislation requirements, while also allowing companies to develop their infrastructure appropriately. Consequently, the utilities are effectively trapped in their expenditure plans, while forecasts of capital expenditure tend to be very accurate, given that utilities have to comply with regulator assessments.
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