National Evidence Base

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Summary
Briefing document summarising important findings
Water Industry Commission of Scotland (WICS) Final Report
Farrierswier report
Beca report
Deloitte report
Standard & Poor’s: Ratings Evaluation Service

Summary

This analysis and modelling advances the evidence base informing the case for change for the Three Waters Reform Programme.

The reports include analysis of the economic benefits of reform by the Water Industry Commission of Scotland (WICS), independent reviews of WICS’ methodology by Farrierswier and Beca, and an analysis of the effects of the proposed reform on the economy and affected industries by Deloitte.

The reports highlight the huge investment required over the next 30 years to ensure that New Zealanders have access to safe drinking water and our wastewater and stormwater networks achieve good environmental outcomes.

The reports point to the opportunities that reform will provide in reducing the costs of water services compared to the status quo. They also indicate the substantial economic benefits the reforms would deliver.

Briefing document summarising important findings

The high-level findings from these reports are summarised in this briefing, including important findings from a suite of reports that comprise the second stage of the evidence base to support the Three Waters Reform Programme.

Water Industry Commission of Scotland (WICS) Final Report

The WICS phase 2 report uses detailed and up-to-date information collected from councils to investigate the estimated potential investment requirements for New Zealand and the scope for efficiency gains from transformation of the three waters service delivery system.

See the Individual council models and slide packs page for simplified versions of the financial models WICS used in its analysis of the potential economic benefits of three waters reform.

WICS has run a sensitivity test of its modelled results using updated revenue and borrowing figures for Christchurch City Council to test the impact this might have on the overall results. The results show that for Christchurch on a stand-alone basis, there was a significant increase to the current (2021) average cost per household but there was no material impact on the estimated average cost per household in 2051. As a result, the updated figures do not change the general conclusions of the WICS report.

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Farrierswier report

Farrierswier reviewed the methodology and underpinning assumptions applied by WICS and the extent to which this is reasonable to inform policy advice.

Beca report

Beca reviewed the standards and practices in the United Kingdom three waters industry and the relevance to New Zealand given WICS has used United Kingdom data and benchmarks as part of its analysis.

Deloitte report

Deloitte has undertaken a comprehensive study of the economic impacts of reform and the potential opportunities and challenges for affected industries.

Standard & Poor’s: Ratings Evaluation Service

The Department engaged with Standard & Poor’s (S&P) to test six hypothetical entity design scenarios through a process known as a ‘Ratings Evaluation Service’ (RES). The assessment by S&P of potential credit rating implications associated with the Reform Programme was made across different scenarios to ensure officials were fully informed about a number of potential structural, system and entity design choices. These documents outline the scenarios and outcomes of the RES.

Contact us

If you have any queries, please email: 3waterssteeringgroup@dia.govt.nz or ThreeWaters@dia.govt.nz

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