How efficient and productive are road toll companies?: Evidence from Norway
This article evaluates the technical efficiency of toll companies, i.e., how toll companies perform relative to each other, their productivity, and whether toll companies improve their efficiency from one year to the next relative to the best performers. The rationale for this study is that Norwegian road toll companies have been criticized for not being as efficient as they should; it has been claimed that some have very large operational costs compared to their peers and hence are inefficient. The framework for analysis is Data Envelopment Analysis and its subsequent Malmquist Productivity indices. The data are from the accounting period of 2001-2004 and contain information on 18 companies. The results show that: (1) there is a potential for efficiency increases of about 14%, (2) there are economies of scale in the industry in that larger companies (as measured by number of lanes served) tend to be more efficient compared to smaller companies, and (3) there has been a productivity increase in the sector of about 1%, and this progress is due more to companies employing a newer and more effective method for collecting funds and less to improving efficiency from one year to the next. Finally, these findings suggest that the Norwegian road authorities should consider reorganizing the toll sector such that the inherent economies of scale are utilized.
Volume (Year): 15 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
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