A Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Privatization of Canadian National Railway
This article uses cost-benefit analysis to estimate the welfare gains from the privatization of Canadian National Railway (CN) in November 1995, one of the largest rail privatizations in history. It also shows how these gains have been distributed among consumers, producers, and government, and between Canadians and non-Canadians. The article uses the costs of Canadian Pacific Railway to create a more credible comparison than in previous privatization studies. Based on a conservative counterfactual, we estimate that CN's privatization generated welfare gains of at least $4 billion (in 1992 dollars). However, the welfare gain was possibly as high as $15 billion. The Canadian government captured almost half of these gains, while CN shareholders captured most of the rest.
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Volume (Year): 35 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
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