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Partial Privatization and Yardstick Competition: Evidence from Employment Dynamics in Bangladesh

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  • V. Bhaskar

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  • Bishnupriya Gupta
  • Mushtaq Khan

Abstract

We analyze the dynamics public and private sector employment, using the natural experiment provided by the partial privatization of the Bangladeshi jute industry. Although the public sector had substantial excess employment of workers initially, this excess was substantially eroded by the end of the period we study. The extent of such erosion differs between white-collar and manual worker categories, with excess employment persisting only in the former. Our findings are consistent with the idea that the central authorities used yardstick competition to reduce public sector managerial rents. We argue that partial privatization increases the efficacy of yardstick competition in the regulation of public firms, since heterogeneous ownership undermines collusion between public sector managers.

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Paper provided by University of Essex, Department of Economics in its series Economics Discussion Papers with number 545.

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Date of creation: 16 Sep 2002
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Handle: RePEc:esx:essedp:545

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  1. Bhaskar, V & Khan, Mushtaq, 1995. "Privatization and Employment: A Study of the Jute Industry in Bangladesh," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 267-73, March.
  2. Joel Sobel, 1999. "A Reexamination of Yardstick Competition," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 8(1), pages 33-60, 03.
  3. Ireland, Norman, 1994. "A theory of incentives in procurement and regulation : Jean-Jacques Laffont and Jean Tirole, (The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1993) pp. 705," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 135-136, March.
  4. Kumbhakar, Subal C. & Hjalmarsson, Lennart, 1998. "Relative performance of public and private ownership under yardstick competition: electricity retail distribution," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 97-122, January.
  5. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1994. "Politicians and Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 995-1025, November.
  6. Tangeras, T.P., 1999. "Collusion-Proof Yardstick Competition," Papers 674, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  7. Boardman, Anthony E & Vining, Aidan R, 1989. "Ownership and Performance in Competitive Environments: A Comparison of the Performance of Private, Mixed, and State-Owned Enterprises," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(1), pages 1-33, April.
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Cited by:
  1. David McKenzie & Dilip Mookherjee, 2003. "The Distributive Impact of Privatization in Latin America: Evidence from Four Countries," JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
  2. M. Islam & Ali Farazmand, 2008. "Perceptions of Civil Servants Toward Privatization and Development: A New Exploratory Study," Public Organization Review, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 37-52, March.
  3. Kevin Amess & Jun Du & Sourafel Girma, . "Full and Partial Privatization in China: The Labor Consequences," Discussion Papers 09/11, University of Nottingham, GEP.

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