Rationale for Reform of Utility Markets (e.g. Fiscal Constraints, Technological Change, Policy Innovations, Incentives for Efficiency) and the Elements of Market Reform, Including Private Participation, Liberalization, and Regulation.

Core References

Private Participation in Infrastructure in Developing Countries: Trends, Impacts, and Policy Lessons

Washington, D.C.: World Bank, 2003.
Harris, Clive

Explains the rise and fall of both public sector monopolies and private participation in infrastructure. Describes when private sector participation improves results and how important regulatory issues, such as pricing and competition, need to be addressed if private participation in infrastructure is to succeed.

Back to the Future: The Potential in Infrastructure Privatization

Note no. 30 in Public Policy for the Private Sector. Washington, D.C.: World Bank Group, 1994.
Klein, Michael, and Neil Roger

Describes the cycles of private and public provision of infrastructure. Examines role of regulation in providing stability to the sectors.

Regulation and Development
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005.
Laffont, Jean-Jacques

Explains that the proper mode of provision of utility services can vary over time and depends on a country’s political, cultural, and institutional features. Examines developing country context in depth.

Sectoral References


Making Competition Work in Electricity
New York: Wiley & Sons, 2002.
Hunt, Sally

Describes reasons for restructuring electricity markets and the economics of the alternative industry structures.


Competition in the Natural Gas Industry: The emergence of spot, financial, and pipeline capacity markets

Note no. 137 in Public Policy for the Private Sector. Washington, D.C.: World Bank Group, March 1998.
Juris, Andrej

Describes basic restructuring and trading arrangements in gas and pipeline markets.


ICT Regulation Toolkit
Washington, D.C.: infoDev and the International Telecommunications Union, 2007.

Provides an overview of reasons for regulation of private telecommunications operators.

What the Transformation of Telecom Markets Means for Regulation

Note no. 121 in Public Policy for the Private Sector. Washington, D.C.: World Bank Group, 1997.
Smith, Peter

Examines the implications of dynamics of telecommunications technologies and markets for regulation.


Urban Bus Toolkit: Tools and Options for Reforming Urban Bus Systems
Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility, World Bank.
CPCS Transcom

Toolkit designed to help government officials and policy makers evaluate existing and alternative urban bus systems in developing and transitional countries. Offers practical advice to enact fundamental system reforms.

Port Reform Toolkit, 2nd Edition
Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility, World Bank.
World Bank Transport Group

Provides policymakers and practitioners guidance for undertaking sustainable and well-considered reforms of public institutions that provide, direct, and regulate port services in developing countries.

Best Methods of Railway Restructuring and Privatization
CFS Discussion Paper Series, number 11, World Bank, Washington, D.C., 1995.
Kopicki, Ron and Louis Thompson

Provides context and guidance to restructure the railways. Addresses distinct structural issues associated with rail enterprise reform, design of specialized intermediary institutions that carry out much of the work of railway restructuring, and management techniques that are appropriately adapted to railway reform and restructuring. Focuses on “best” methods built on seven case studies of recent railway restructuring efforts: Japan National Railway, New Zealand Railways, Argentina Railways, Swedish Railways, British Railways, and railroads in the United States, and Canadian Railways.

Privatization and Regulation of Transport Infrastructure: Guidelines for Policymakers and Regulators
World Bank Institute Development Study, World Bank, Washington, D.C., 2000.
Estache, Antonio

Addresses liberalization of transport policies and the role played by private operators and investors in transport infrastructure. Provides an overview of why economic regulation is important and examines four subsectors: airports, ports, railways, and roads. Discusses for each subsector: relevance from the viewpoint of a regulator; main privatization and regulation trends; price and quality regulation issues that characterize the sector, and performance indicators that the sector’s regulators should be able to rely on to be effective in their jobs.


Regulating Water Services: Sending the Right Signals to Utilities in Chile
Note no. 286. March 2005.

Bitran, Gabriel, and Pamela Arellano

Examines how during the 1980s and 1990s the Chilean water and sanitation sector underwent deep reforms so that private capital could finance the huge investments needed to achieve universal service. Investigates key features of the new regulatory scheme that contributed to the sustainability of the reforms: a phased approach, an efficient pricing policy and methodology, and expert panels to deal with conflict resolution.

Government Opportunism and the Provision of Water

in Spilled Water: Institutional Commitment in the Provision of Water Services, edited by William Savedoff and Pablo Spiller. Washington, D.C.: Inter-American Development Bank, 1999.
Savedoff, William, and Pablo Spiller

Describes roles that regulation may play in decreasing government opportunism for both private operators and public operators.

Other References

An Empirical Analysis of Competition, Privatization, and Regulation in Telecommunications Markets in Africa and Latin America
Policy Research Working Paper 2136. Washington, D.C.: World Bank, May 1999.
Wallsten, Scott J

Examines the effects of telecommunications reforms in Africa and Latin America. Finds that privatization and an independent regulator together improve sector performance. Privatization alone yields few benefits and has some negative effects. Competition increases per capita number of mainlines, payphones, and connection capacity, and decreases the price of local calls.

Key Words

Market Reform, Competition, Regulation, Franchising, Cross-subsidization, Privatization.


Case Studies

Regulatory Reforms in India: Effectiveness, Efficiency, and Impacts
The Energy and Resources Institute, New Delhi, India, 2003.
Garg, A., M. Kabra, and R. Kacker

The Restructuring and Privatization of Electricity Distribution and Supply Business in Brazil: A Social Cost-Benefit Analysis
Working Paper WP 0309, University of Cambridge, Department of Applied Economics, January 2003.
Mota, Raffaella Lisbôa

Redistributive Impact of Privatization and the Regulation of Utilities in Chile
Discussion Paper 2001/19, World Institute for Development Economics Research, United Nations University, Helsinki, June 2001.
Paredes, Ricardo

Welfare Impacts of Electricity Generation Sector Reform in the Philippines
Working Paper WP 0316, Department of Applied Economics, University of Cambridge, 2003.
Toba, Natsuko

Social Impact of Privatization and the Regulation of Utilities in Peru
Discussion Paper 2001/17, World Institute for Development Economics Research, United Nations University, Helsinki, June 2001.
Torero, Maximo, and Albert Pasco-Font