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Mechanisms of Funding for Universal Service Obligations: the Electricity Case

The transition towards a more competitive regime in network industries (and specially in electricity sector) raises the relevant question of funding for the Universal Service Obligations (USOs). Our paper focuses on two ways of funding for universal service and equal treatment obligations (Ubiquity and Non Discrimination constraints): the funding through access charge (CS regime) or taxation (T regime). Using a network model including competition between an historical monopoly (in charge for the USOs) and an entrant, we obtain some results concerning gains and losses of social welfare due to those mechanisms. We show that most of the time it is socially better to let the historical monopoly be active whatever the type of funding for USOs applying, and whatever profitability of the firms is. However, when the entrant is active, we can highlight that the introduction of the T regime (compared to the CS one) implies either welfare deterioration or an entry prevention strategy by the historical Þrm. Therefore, the T regime could not be an argument for the regulator to promote vertical separation of the historical firm (according to the European community line).

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Paper provided by CREDEN (Centre de Recherche en Economie et Droit de l'Energie), Faculty of Economics, University of Montpellier 1 in its series Cahiers du CREDEN (CREDEN Working Papers) with number 03.11.41.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mop:credwp:03.11.41
Contact details of provider: Postal: CREDEN, Faculté d'Economie, Avenue Raymond Dugrand, CS 79606, 34960 MONTPELLIER Cedex 2, France
Phone: 33 (0)4 67 15 83 60
Fax: 33 (0)4 67 15 84 04
Web page: http://www.creden.univ-montp1.fr

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  1. repec:fth:inseep:9955 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Anton, James J & Vander Weide, James H & Vettas, Nikolaos, 1998. "Strategic Pricing and Entry under Universal Service and Cross-Market Price Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 1922, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Mark Armstrong, 2001. "Access Pricing, Bypass, and Universal Service," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 297-301, May.
  4. Chone, Philippe & Flochel, Laurent & Perrot, Anne, 2002. "Allocating and funding universal service obligations in a competitive market," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(9), pages 1247-1276, November.
  5. Armstrong, Mark & Doyle, Chris & Vickers, John, 1996. "The Access Pricing Problem: A Synthesis," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 131-50, June.
  6. repec:mop:credwp:00.06.17 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. H. Cremer & F. Gasmi & A. Grimaud & J. J. Laffont, 2001. "Universal Service: An economic perspective," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 72(1), pages 5-43, 03.
  8. Philippe Chone & Laurent Flochel & Anne Perrot, 2000. "Allocating and Funding Universal Service Obligations in a Competitive Network Market," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0213, Econometric Society.
  9. repec:mop:credwp:04.07.47 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Chone, Philippe & Flochel, Laurent & Perrot, Anne, 2000. "Universal service obligations and competition," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 249-259, September.
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