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Posted: 28/02/17

Market Codes set out how Open Water market will work

One of the final stages in the opening of the new water retail market has just been completed. It is the publication of documents, called ‘Market Codes’ setting out how the market will actually work.

Opening this market  is a complex challenge especially when delivering the technical systems, checks and ways of working that are needed to get the market right for customers and understood by the water companies. These documents are designed to be the blueprint for the industry to work to and have been developed by the regulator, Ofwat, in conjunction with the water companies and retailers. These market codes are the Market Arrangements Code and the Wholesale-Retail Code.

The market codes deal with the following.

  • The Wholesale-Retail Code (WRC), a statutory code which sets out the business terms, market terms and operational terms that will apply to all two-way arrangements between a wholesaler – the company which collects, cleans and provides the water and sewerage services and a licensed retailer
  • The Market Arrangements Code (MAC), a non-statutory code which sets out the arrangements to establish a market operator, including the processes for joining and operating the market operator and for establishing a code panel.
  • Other codes that may be needed to allow the market to function correctly.

Please see the guidance for applications to Ofwat by Licensees and Appointees for derogations from compliance with obligations in the WRC and/or any WRC subsidiary document. A derogation is a direction from Ofwat which relieves a licensee or appointee from compliance with certain of its obligations to comply with the WRC either as a result of it entering into Wholesale Contracts or as a result of the operation of the Stapling Condition. Please review the outcomes and responses to our Derogations guidance consultation.

The outcomes and responses to our Market Arrangements Codes consultation and our Wholesale Retail Codes consultation were also published.

You can also view the S8 notice from Independent Water Networks.

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