Jun 15 2012

Glas Half Full

Glas Cymru, the not-for-profit parent company of Welsh Water has announced a massive spending programme for the next three years, which it says will create 1,500 jobs.  Chris Jones from the company says it is able to do this in part because of its not-for-profit model in an article in this week’s Guardian.

Welsh Water’s press release says that not only is this £100 million more than they originally planned to spend, but that 50% of it will be spent with local companies.  This is exactly the sort of investment I’ve talked about in a previous blog here, that I think we need to get the economy going.  It’s productive investment, rather than speculative investment and it’s interesting that Glas Cymru think this is possible because of their unusual ownership structure.  They are the only water company that is a not-for-profit and not state owned.

Obviously at this point I should declare an interest and say that not only do I live in Herefordshire and so am a Welsh Water customer, but I am also a member of Glas Cymru.  I feel proud to be part of such an innovative company and the reason why I became a member was because of this ownership structure.  (All of which doesn’t mean that I think privatisation of the water companies was a good idea in the first place.)

Personal involvement aside, I think you’ll agree that this is refreshingly good news when so much else is bad at the moment.  Only time will tell if it’s going to be money well spent, but I think it’s exactly what we need to do right now.

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