Corruption and Positive Selection in Privatization
We consider the supply of a public good based on a publicly-owned facility. The Government has a choice between provision in-house and privatizing the facility and then outsourcing the production. In particular, we focus on corruption in the decision to privatize and on its effect on social welfare when there is asymmetric information on the public and private manager's efficiency. Our analysis shows that a corrupt Government, that chooses to privatize only in exchange for a bribe, makes a positive selection on the private firm's efficiency and, thus, may raise expected social welfare above what an honest Government could get.
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