A recent report by Deloitte notes that significant growth – of up to 80 per cent – is anticipated in the water sector workforce, growing from around 9,000 today to 17,000 in 30 years.
This presents significant opportunities for employment growth, specialisation and increased career opportunities. The NTU will work alongside the sector to develop an Industry Transformation Strategy to ensure this opportunity for increasing opportunities in the sector is embraced and owned by the sector.
The Government is considering regulatory safeguards to ensure that consumers and communities receive efficient and affordable three waters services that meet their needs both now and into the future.
Key areas for consideration include:
• Economic regulation to help consumers from problems that can occur when businesses have a lot of market power. This could involve requiring businesses to disclose certain information, directly regulating the price and quality of services, and setting a strong efficiency challenge for regulated businesses.
• Consumer protection, to incorporate the voices of consumers and communities should be incorporated throughout the design of the three waters regulatory system, to ensure it is responsive and accountable. This could involve requiring businesses to meet minimum service levels, providing protections for vulnerable consumers, or establishing a consumer disputes resolution scheme.
The Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment is consulting on how economic regulation and consumer protection should be designed.
Submissions are due 20 December 2021 and can be made on their website.