The Privatization Challenge: A Strategic, Legal, and Institutional Analysis of International Experience

By Pierre Guislain | Go to book overview

1
Defining a Privatization Strategy

Developing a strategy is often regarded as the first step in a privatization program. In fact, since most privatization programs are an integral part of more comprehensive economic reform, the first step should be to define the key objectives driving the government’s overall economic program. The privatization strategy then becomes a substrategy geared to the objectives of the broader reform program. Most former centrally planned economies, as well as, for example, Argentina, Chile, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru (see box 1.1), and the United Kingdom, opted for radical economic reform with privatization as one of its main pillars.1

Moreover, the sale of SOEs should rarely be an end in itself, but rather one instrument of economic policy among others. Some authors argue that privatization can be an objective in itself for transition countries on the road from a command economy to a free market economy, particularly the exComecon countries. If privatization is understood in its broadest sense as the privatization of the economy, then this would indeed be right. If, however, it is understood as simply the sale of SOEs, then it should be seen as a necessary component of a broader program aimed at establishing a market economy. In transition countries, the sale of SOEs is essential for the formation of a market economy, whereas in many other countries governments may feel that they have other options available to achieve their policy objectives.

Developing a privatization strategy involves identifying government objectives, analyzing the existing constraints on execution of the program, and deciding on an approach to achieve the objectives while taking the constraints into account. The next section of this chapter is devoted to defining the objectives of a privatization program. The section that follows deals with political constraints, and others address the constraints specific to the concerned country,

1. See the geographic listing in the bibliography for further reading on each of these countries. On central and eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, see, in particular, World Bank 1996b.

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The Privatization Challenge: A Strategic, Legal, and Institutional Analysis of International Experience
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface xi
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - Defining a Privatization Strategy 15
  • 2 - Privatization and Basic Legal Norms 33
  • 3 - Privatization in a Market Economy 45
  • 4 - Privatization and Public-Sector Management 89
  • 5 - The Privatization Law 111
  • 6 - Institutional Framework for Privatization 149
  • 7 - Privatization of Infrastructure 203
  • 8 - Meeting the Privatization Challenge 287
  • Glossary 335
  • Bibliography 343
  • Geographic Classification of References 369
  • Specialized Journals 379
  • Internet Resources 381
  • Subject Index 385
  • Geographic Index 393
  • Index of Enterprises, Agencies and Other Organizations 397
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