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Liberalisation in a world of second best: evidence on European network industries

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  • Ugur, Mehmet

Abstract

This article reports mixed results about the impacts of liberalisation in European network industries. Telecommunications prices have fallen and converged across EU-15, but electricity and gas prices have either increased or diverged. Productivity has increased, but mainly as a result of falling employment in absolute and relative terms. Liberalised industries are still characterised by high levels of market concentration and low levels of transparency and market integration. These findings are in line with the predictions of the theory of second best and suggest that the case for liberalisation of network industries has been oversold.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 17873.

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Date of creation: 27 Feb 2009
Date of revision: 13 Oct 2009
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:17873

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Keywords: Liberalisation; network industries; second-best; public policy; European Union;

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  1. Reiner Martin & Moreno Roma & Isabel Vansteenkiste, 2005. "Regulatory reforms in selected EU network industries," Occasional Paper Series 28, European Central Bank.
  2. Severin Borenstein & James B. Bushnell & Frank A. Wolak, 2002. "Measuring Market Inefficiencies in California's Restructured Wholesale Electricity Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1376-1405, December.
  3. Charles Blackorby, 1990. "Economic Policy in a Second-Best Environment," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 23(4), pages 748-71, November.
  4. Mehmet Ugur, 2004. "(Re)theorising European Integration under Globalisation: A Political Economy Approach," European Political Economy Review, European Political Economy Infrastructure Consortium, European Political Economy Infrastructure Consortium, vol. 2(Summer), pages 74-103.
  5. Carlo Fiorio & M. Florio & S. Salini & P. Ferrari, 2007. "Consumers’ Attitudes on Services of General Interest in the EU: Accessibility, Price and Quality 2000-2004," Working Papers, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei 2007.2, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  6. Stephen Thomas, 2004. "Evaluating the British Model of Electricity Deregulation," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 75(3), pages 367-398, 09.
  7. Stefan Buehler, 2005. "The Promise and Pitfalls of Restructuring Network Industries," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 6(2), pages 205-228, 05.
  8. Jarrell, Gregg A, 1978. "The Demand for State Regulation of the Electric Utility Industry," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 269-95, October.
  9. Richard Lipsey, 2007. "Reflections on the general theory of second best at its golden jubilee," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, Springer, vol. 14(4), pages 349-364, August.
  10. Bushnell, James & Mansur, Erin T., 2005. "Consumption Under Noisy Price Signals: A Study of Electricity Retail Rate Deregulation in San Diego," Staff General Research Papers 13142, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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