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Of Carts and Horses: Regulation and Privatization in Telecommunications Reforms

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  • Scott Wallsten
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    Abstract

    In the early 1990s, many advocated quick privatization of state-owned monopolies in developing countries, assuming that market institutions would develop once firms were privately owned. More recent thinking emphasizes establishing institutions conducive to promoting competition before privatization. To date little empirical work has informed the debate. This paper addresses this gap by testing whether establishing a regulatory authority prior to privatizing incumbent telecommunications firms matters. I find that countries that established regulatory authorities prior to privatization saw increased telecom investment and telephone penetration compared to countries that did not. Moreover, investors paid more for telecom firms in countries that established a regulator prior to privatization.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Journal of Economic Policy Reform.

    Volume (Year): 6 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 217-231

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:jpolrf:v:6:y:2003:i:4:p:217-231

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    Related research

    Keywords: Telecommunications; Regulation; Sequencing; Developing countries;

    References

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    1. Wallsten, Scott J, 2001. "Telecommunications Investment and Traffic in Developing Countries: The Effects of International Settlement Rate Reforms," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 307-23, November.
    2. Megginson, William L & Nash, Robert C & van Randenborgh, Matthias, 1994. " The Financial and Operating Performance of Newly Privatized Firms: An International Empirical Analysis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(2), pages 403-52, June.
    3. Noll, Roger G., 1999. "Telecommunications Reform in Developing Countries," Working paper 527, Regulation2point0.
    4. Jeffry M. Netter & William L. Megginson, 2001. "From State to Market: A Survey of Empirical Studies on Privatization," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 321-389, June.
    5. Röller, Lars-Hendrik & Waverman, Leonard, 2000. "Telecommunications Infrastructure And Economic Development: A Simultaneous Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 2399, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Wallsten, S.J., 2000. "Telecommunications Privatization in Developing Countries: The Real Effects of Exclusivity Periods," Papers 99-031, United Nations World Employment Programme-.
    7. Ros, Agustin J, 1999. "Does Ownership or Competition Matter? The Effects of Telecommunications Reform on Network Expansion and Efficiency," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 65-92, January.
    8. Galal, Ahmed & Nauriyal, Bharat, 1995. "Regulating telecommunications in developing countries : outcomes, incentives, and commitment," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1520, The World Bank.
    9. Roland, Gerard, 1994. "On the Speed and Sequencing of Privatisation and Restructuring," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(426), pages 1158-68, September.
    10. Stiglitz, Joseph, 1999. "Promoting Competition in Telecommunications," UADE Working Papers 2_1999, Instituto de Economía, Universidad Argentina de la Empresa.
    11. Winston, Clifford, 1993. "Economic Deregulation: Days of Reckoning for Microeconomists," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(3), pages 1263-89, September.
    12. Newbery, David M., 1991. "Reform in Hungary : Sequencing and privatisation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(2-3), pages 571-580, April.
    13. Ben A. Petrazzini, 1996. "Competition in Telecoms-Implications for Universal Service and Employment," World Bank Other Operational Studies 11603, The World Bank.
    14. Spiller, Pablo T, 1996. "Institutions and Commitment," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(2), pages 421-52.
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    Cited by:
    1. Maiorano, Federica & Stern, Jon, 2007. "Institutions and telecommunications infrastructure in low and middle-income countries: The case of mobile telephony," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 165-181, September.
    2. Doganoglu, Toker & Grzybowski, Lukasz, 2007. "Estimating network effects in mobile telephony in Germany," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 65-79, March.
    3. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:12:y:2008:i:30:p:1-10 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Estache, Antonio & Goicoechea, Ana & Manacorda, Marco, 2006. "Telecommunications performance, reforms, and governance," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3822, The World Bank.
    5. Estache, Antonio & Goicoechea, Ana & Trujillo, Lourdes, 2006. "Utilities reforms and corruption in developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4081, The World Bank.
    6. Maiorano, F. & Stern, J., 2007. "Institutions and investment in low and middle-income countries: the case of mobile communications," Working Papers 07/06, Department of Economics, City University London.
    7. Antonio Estache & Ana Goicoechea & Marco Manacorda, 2006. "Telecommunications Reform and Performance – A Global View," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 4(3), pages 16-21, October.
    8. Filippo Belloc & Antonio Nicita & Pier Luigi Parcu, 2011. "Deregulating Telecommunications in Europe: Timing, Path-Dependency, and Institutional Complementarities," RSCAS Working Papers 2011/47, European University Institute.
    9. Sang Lee, 2008. "Market liberalization and ownership status of incumbent telecom enterprises: global evidence from the telecom sector," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 12(30), pages 1-10.

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