UK regulatory body Ofgem has outlined conditions that must be met by National Grid Transco (NGT) and each of the purchasers of the four local gas distribution companies prior to the £5.8 billion (euro 8.4 billion) sale planned by NGT. Under Phase I the gas districos are to be separated out into wholly-owned subsidiaries of NGT on completion of a number of conditions, including of a number of modifications to Transco’s price controls. Phase II will then see NGT sell its shares to a third party.

NGT has agreed to sell the districo for the North of England to an alliance led by United Utilities, the Wales and West network are to be sold to a consortium led by the Australian Macquarie Bank, and the networks for the South of England and Scotland are set to go to a consortium including Scottish and Southern Energy.