asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what progress he has made with his examination of the scope for introducing a measure of privatisation into the water industry.
On 1 April I sent a discussion paper to water authority chairmen. At this early stage I am anxious to obtain the initial views of the water authorities and water companies on the many complex issues that need to be addressed.I am placing a copy of the discussion paper in the Library of the House. It is not a formal consultation document. Its purpose is to identify the issues which need to be considered on which the water authorities' views will be valued before I consult more widely.