Corporate Realignments in the Natural Gas Industry : Does the North American Experience Foretell the Future for the European Union?
This paper seeks to explore the extent to which the corporate realignments which have occurred in the North American Natural Gas Industry during a now relatively lengthy experience with liberalisation involving a large number of players, will be imitated in the future by European Union countries other than the UK (which is of course already long-embarked along the path of Anglo-Saxon liberalisation). The paper first of all catalogues the North American experience, drawing on company performance data assembled by the authors over the last decade (Rutledge & Wright, 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2000). Secondly, this empirical exploration gives way to theoretical speculation: are there elements of the North American experience for which explanatory generalisations are possible? Thirdly, these empirical and theoretical insights are employed to identify and explore actual and potential differences in the corporate evolution of the European Union natural gas industry.
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