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Competition and Regulation in the UK Gas Industry

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  • Waddams Price, Catherine

Abstract

The decade since privatization has seen gas change from an integrated monopoly with no competition and without the structure necessary to encourage it, to an industry moving rapidly towards full competition. British Gas was privatized as an integrated monopoly; it had no regulation in the bulk market, and light regulation in the tariff market. Within 10 years it has lost more than half its bulk market, has voluntarily 'demerged' into a transportation and supply arm, and is leading the way in liberalization of the residential market. Some of these changes have been assisted by the particular circumstances of the gas market, especially the contracts which the incumbent has inherited. The Regulator is relying increasingly on prevention of undue discrimination for control of the dominant supplier, and this principle has been discussed and applied in a number of cases within the industry. Liberalization also raises important distributional issues, especially in the residential market. Copyright 1997 by Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Waddams Price, Catherine, 1997. "Competition and Regulation in the UK Gas Industry," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(1), pages 47-63, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxford:v:13:y:1997:i:1:p:47-63
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    Cited by:

    1. Pagliero, Mario, 2003. "Strategic interaction on the UK Gas Transportation System: the St. Fergus and Bacton constraints," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 345-358, July.
    2. Huw Dixon & Joshy Easaw, 2001. "Strategic Responses to Regulatory Policies: What Lessons Can Be Learned from the U.K. Contract Gas Market?," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 18(4), pages 379-396, June.
    3. Artana, Daniel & Navajas, Fernando & Urbiztondo, Santiago, 2001. "Regulation policies towards utilities and competitive industries. The case of Argentina," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 585-607.
    4. repec:ver:wpaper:40 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Giovanni Goldoni, 2007. "Un bilancio delle liberalizzazioni dei settori dell’energia elettrica e del gas naturale in Italia e in Europa," Working Papers 40/2007, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
    6. Mario Pagliero, 2000. "Competition in the UK gas industry," ICER Working Papers 12-2000, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.
    7. Gasmi, Farid & Oviedo, Juan Daniel, 2010. "Investment in transport infrastructure, regulation, and gas-gas competition," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 726-736, May.
    8. Contin, Ignacio & Correlje, Aad & Huerta, Emilio, 2001. "The Spanish distribution system for oil products: an obstacle to competition?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 103-111, January.

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