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SOUTH STAFFORDSHIRE PLC NEWS ARTICLE

26/01/10 - South Staffs Water Accepts Ofwat's Final Determination

South Staffs Water has confirmed that it has accepted Ofwat's Final Determination of water charges for the next five years, and as such will not be referring the regulator's decision to the Competition Commission for re-examination.

The 5-year price limits (changes in customer bills) for the period 2010 to 2015 are +2.8%, i.e. on average around 0.6% per year. Customer bills will also change in line with the annual inflation levels that prevail.

The average household water bill in 2010-11 will be £124, which is likely to be around 22% less than the national average due to the Company's efficient operations.

The slight increase in customer bills arises because we are going to invest approximately £135m in capital expenditure over the 5 year period, which is 15% more than current levels. This will be spent on things such as installing more customer meters, meeting our leakage target, investing in our pipe network and finding and fixing bursts. This investment equates to £248 per property over the 5 years. We are also facing rising operating costs over the five year period for things such as rising power prices.

South Staffs Water is a water-only company. We also collect sewerage charges on behalf of Severn Trent. The combined water and sewerage bill will be the lowest in the country.

South Staffs Water's strategy continues to be to offer the best value for customers combined with the highest levels of service.

Further details can be obtained at: www.south-staffs-water.co.uk

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