The government has today set out the legislation it needs to introduce more competition into the water market.
The draft Water Bill, which went before Parliament this morning, paves the way for all businesses and public bodies in England and Wales to choose which companies they buy their water and sewarage from.
Under the proposals, an organisation with multiple sites in different parts of the country could opt to negotiate with a single company for all of its water.
The government says this could result in considerable savings both in the price it pays and the cost of administration and billing.
Water minister Richard Benyon estimates this opening up of the water market could save £2bn over 30 years.