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Ownership Unbundling of Gas Transmission Networks - Empirical Evidence

Author

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  • Growitsch, Christian

    () (Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln)

  • Stronzik, Marcus

    () (Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln)

Abstract

The European Commission has intensively discussed the mandatory separation of natural gas transmission from production and services. However, economic theory is ambiguous on the price effects of vertical separation. In this paper, we empirically analyse the effect of ownership unbundling of gas transmission networks as the strongest form of vertical separation on the level of end-user prices. Therefore, we apply different dynamic estimators as system GMM and the bias-corrected least-squares dummy variable or LSDVC estimator on an unbalanced panel out of 18 EU countries over 19 years, allowing us to avoid the endogeneity problem and to estimate the long-run effects of regulation. We introduce a set of regulatory indicators as market entry regulation, ownership structure, vertical separation and market structure and account for structural and economic country specifics. Among these different estimators, we consistently find that ownership unbundling has no impact on natural gas end-user prices, while the more modest legal unbundling reduces them significantly. Furthermore, third-party access, market structure and privatisation show significant influence with the latter leading to higher price levels.

Suggested Citation

  • Growitsch, Christian & Stronzik, Marcus, 2011. "Ownership Unbundling of Gas Transmission Networks - Empirical Evidence," EWI Working Papers 2011-7, Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln (EWI).
  • Handle: RePEc:ris:ewikln:2011_007
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:ers:journl:v:xv:y:2012:i:sie:p:157-194 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Brunekreeft, Gert, 2015. "Network unbundling and flawed coordination: Experience from the electricity sector," Utilities Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 11-18.
    3. Isabel Soares & Paula Sarmento, 2012. "Unbundling in the Telecommunications and the Electricity Sectors: How Far should it Go?," European Research Studies Journal, European Research Studies Journal, vol. 0(4), pages 157-194.
    4. Tsatsos, Aristidis, 2012. "Die Liberalisierung des russischen Gassektors: 3 Szenarios?
      [The liberalisation of the Russian gas sector: 3 scenarios?]
      ," MPRA Paper 44623, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Gugler, Klaus & Rammerstorfer, Margarethe & Schmitt, Stephan, 2013. "Ownership unbundling and investment in electricity markets — A cross country study," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 702-713.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Natural gas; Networks; Regulation; Ownership unbundling; Panel data;

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • L43 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Legal Monopolies and Regulation or Deregulation
    • L94 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Electric Utilities

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