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Capitalization and Privatization in Bolivia: An Aproximation to an Evaluation


  • Barja, Gover
  • Urquiola, Miguel


The paper describes the privatization process in Bolivia, placing emphasis on the particularities of the capitalization mechanism that was used for this purpose, and the regulatory framework introduced as its essential complement. With this background, the paper then details the changes in the industrial organization and ownership patterns in the electricity, oil and gas, telecommunications, transportation, and water industries. The discussion then turns to these processes’ economic and social consequences. In the first case, the key issues are which agents benefited from the transfer of assets, and the effects on firm-level variables like investment, profitability, and transfers to the State. With regards to social outcomes, we focus on the effects on employees and consumers. For the first, interest centers on what happened to employment and wages in the sectors affected; for the second, what occurred to access and prices for privatized utilities, and to welfare more generally. This paper touches on all these issues, although in several cases a full treatment is not possible due to data limitations.

Suggested Citation

  • Barja, Gover & Urquiola, Miguel, 2003. "Capitalization and Privatization in Bolivia: An Aproximation to an Evaluation," MPRA Paper 23049, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:23049

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Barja, Gover, 1999. "Las reformas estructurales bolivianas y su impacto sobre inversiones
      [Bolivian structural reforms and their impact on investment]
      ," MPRA Paper 23479, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Estache, Antonio & Gomez-Lobo, Andres & Leipziger, Danny, 2000. "Utility privatization and the needs of the poor in Latin America - Have we learned enough to get it right?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2407, The World Bank.
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    Cited by:

    1. World Bank, 2005. "Bolivia : Country Economic Memorandum, Policies to Improve Growth and Employment," World Bank Other Operational Studies 8399, The World Bank.
    2. Barja Daza, Gover & Monterrey Arce, Javier & Villarroel Böhrt, Sergio, 2006. "Bolivia: Impact of shocks and poverty policy on household welfare," Revista Latinoamericana de Desarrollo Economico, Instituto de Investigaciones Socio-Económicas (IISEC), Universidad Católica Boliviana, issue 6, pages 63-123, Abril.
    3. Philippe Marin, 2009. "Public-Private Partnerships for Urban Water Utilities : A Review of Experiences in Developing Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2703, March.
    4. Williams, J.H. & Ghanadan, R., 2006. "Electricity reform in developing and transition countries: A reappraisal," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 815-844.
    5. Yanez-Pagans, Monica, 2008. "Culture and Human Capital Investments: Evidence of an Unconditional Cash Transfer Program in Bolivia," IZA Discussion Papers 3678, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Christian Velasquez-Donaldson, 2007. "Analysis of the Hydrocarbon Sector in Bolivia: How are the Gas and Oil Revenues Distributed?," Development Research Working Paper Series 06/2007, Institute for Advanced Development Studies.

    More about this item


    Privatization; Regulation; Economic Impact;

    JEL classification:

    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior
    • L9 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities


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