Australia's Urban Water Sector

Public inquiry

This inquiry has concluded. The Productivity Commission's final inquiry report was sent to government on 31 August 2011. The Government released the report on 12 October 2011.

In undertaking the inquiry, the Commission identified opportunities for efficiency gains in the structural, institutional, regulatory and other arrangements that govern the sector. In particular, the Commission:

  • provided options to achieve identified efficiency gains
  • subjected these options to a rigorous cost-benefit analysis to identify their:
    • economic, social and environmental impacts
    • impacts on Australian governments, business and consumers
    • propensity to facilitate supply and demand planning and decision-making in the medium and long term.
  • proposed a work program including implementation plans for the options, identifying:
    • practical actions that the Commonwealth, state and territory governments and local councils can undertake to implement options for reforms, including any transitional arrangements
    • priority areas where greatest efficiency gains are evident and where early action is practicable
    • quantitative and qualitative indicators for efficiency gains in the urban water and waste water sectors.

The Commission consulted widely with government agencies and other interested parties.

Further information