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Academic Opinion of Economic Scholars on Champsaur Commission’s Paper


  • François Lévêque


This paper is the joint position taken by nine academics on the French debate introduced by the “Rapport de la commission présidée par Paul Champsaur sur l’organisation du marché de l’électricité” on April 2009. In order to reform the French reform, the Champsaur commission has made three main recommendations: (i) withdrawing the current retail administered tariff for business (ii) maintaining retail administered tariffs for households (iii) introducing a wholesale administered tariff on electricity from nuclear power generation. This rapport invites discussions on the French market design. Our academic joint position challenges these propositions. The authors welcome to the fact the commission proposes to abandon the tariff for business as very complex to implement (and hence costly) and freezes competition. However, authors have reservations about the other two recommendations. They are mainly based on the classical two-prong economic test to support a new regulation: (i) assessing its costs and benefits to ensure the latter offsets the former; (ii) comparing the recommended regulation with alternative instruments to verify that it is the best choice.

Suggested Citation

  • François Lévêque, 2009. "Academic Opinion of Economic Scholars on Champsaur Commission’s Paper," RSCAS Working Papers 2009/38, European University Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:rsc:rsceui:2009/38

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rosse, James N, 1970. "Estimating Cost Function Parameters without Using Cost Data: Illustrated Methodology," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 38(2), pages 256-275, March.
    2. Frank A. Wolak, 2007. "Quantifying the supply-side benefits from forward contracting in wholesale electricity markets," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 22(7), pages 1179-1209.
    3. Nevo, Aviv, 2001. "Measuring Market Power in the Ready-to-Eat Cereal Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(2), pages 307-342, March.
    4. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1995. "Product Differentiation and Oligopoly in International Markets: The Case of the U.S. Automobile Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 891-951, July.
    5. Bresnahan, Timothy F., 1981. "Departures from marginal-cost pricing in the American automobile industry : Estimates for 1977-1978," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 201-227, November.
    6. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-890, July.
    7. Frank A. Wolak, 2003. "Measuring Unilateral Market Power in Wholesale Electricity Markets: The California Market, 1998–2000," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 425-430, May.
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    More about this item


    Champsaur commission; French Electricity market reform; Nuclear industry reform; Market design; redistribution of scarcity rents;

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