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From fixed to state-dependent duration in public-private contracts

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  • Daniel Danau

    (University of Caen Basse-Normandie, CREM CNRS UMR 6211, France)

  • Annalisa Vinella

    (Università degli Studi di Bari "Aldo Moro", Italy)

Abstract

A government delegates a build-operate-transfer project to a private firm. At the contracting stage, the operating cost is unknown. The firm can increase the likelihood of facing a low cost (the good state) by exerting effort when building the infrastructure. Once this is in place, the firm learns the true cost and begins to operate. Under limited commitment, either the firm or the government may renege on the contract. Within this context, we explore how well a contract with a state-dependent duration performs, as compared to the more standard fixed-term contract. Under full commitment, the efficient allocation is decentralized, whether the contractual term is fixed or state-dependent. Under limited commitment, in situations where break-up of the partnership is little costly for the government, the efficient allocation can be decentralized only if it is stipulated that the duration of the contract will be longer in the good state than in the bad state. This result is at odds with the prescription of the literature on "flexible-term" contracts, which recommends a longer contractual length when the operating conditions are unfavourable.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS in its series Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) with number 201344.

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Date of creation: Dec 2013
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Handle: RePEc:tut:cremwp:201344

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Related research

Keywords: Fixed-term contract; state-dependent duration; limited commitment; renegotiation; public-private partnerships;

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References

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  1. Guasch, J. Luis & Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Straub, Stéphane, 2008. "Renegotiation of concession contracts in Latin America: Evidence from the water and transport sectors," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 421-442, March.
  2. Daniel Danau, 2009. "A note on fixed and flexible-term contracts," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(2), pages 964-975.
  3. Eduardo Engel & Ronald Fischer & Alexander Galetovic, 2007. "The Basic Public Finance of Public-Private Partnerships," Documentos de Trabajo 234, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  4. Philippe Gagnepain & Marc Ivaldi & David Martimort, 2009. "Renégociation de contrats dans l'industrie du transport urbain en France," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 60(4), pages 927-947.
  5. Eduardo M.R.A. Engel & Ronald D. Fischer & Alexander Galetovic, 1998. "Least-Present-Value-of-Revenue Auctions and Highway Franchising," NBER Working Papers 6689, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Bennett, John & Elisabetta Iossa, 2002. "Building and Managing Facilities for Public Services," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2002 22, Royal Economic Society.
  7. Sudeshna Ghosh Banerjee & Jennifer M. Oetzel & Rupa Ranganathan, 2006. "Private Provision of Infrastructure in Emerging Markets: Do Institutions Matter?," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 24(2), pages 175-202, 03.
  8. Martimort, David & Pouyet, Jerome, 2008. "To build or not to build: Normative and positive theories of public-private partnerships," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 393-411, March.
  9. Elisabetta Iossa & David Martimort, 2008. "The Simple Micro-Economics of Public-Private Partnerships," CEIS Research Paper 139, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 15 Feb 2013.
  10. J. Luis Guasch, 2004. "Granting and Renegotiating Infrastructure Concessions : Doing it Right," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15024, August.
  11. J. Guasch & Jean-Jacques Laffont & Stéphane Straub, 2006. "Renegotiation of Concession Contracts: A Theoretical Approach," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 55-73, September.
  12. Eduardo Engel & Ronald Fischer & Alexander Galetovic, 1997. "Highway Franchising: Pitfalls and Opportunities," Documentos de Trabajo 15, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
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