UK finance minister: Thames Water must sort out its own issues

FILE PHOTO: Thames Water vans are parked as repair and maintenance work takes place, in London

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -Britain's struggling Thames Water must sort out its own financial issues, finance minister Jeremy Hunt said on Wednesday, warning that the British state would never insure investors against bad decisions.

Thames Water, the nation's biggest water utility, has been engulfed in crisis and faces potential nationalisation after its shareholders last month refused to pay up to help stabilise its finances.

"I make no comment on Thames because they need to sort out their own issues," Hunt told reporters during a visit to Washington when asked what a government-led administration process for Thames Water could do for investors' confidence in Britain.

"What we're never going to do for people who invest in the UK, is say that the state is going to insure you against bad decisions made by management or shareholders. That's what markets are about."

(Reporting by Howard Schneider, writing by William James, editing by Sandra Maler)