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Home Policy Articles: Public Administration: Privatization

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From Public Good to Private Exploitation: Electricity Deregulation, Privatization and Continental Integration

Marjorie Griffin Cohen’s paper From Public Good to Private Exploitation: Electricity Deregulation, Privatization and Continental Integration argues the public provision of electricity is in a precarious position due to forces driving industry deregulation. Though Canada’s electricity industry remains largely publicly owned, Cohen believes the industry is invariably headed towards privatization.
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/documents/National_Office_P...

Nav Canada: A Model for Commercializing Public Enterprises

In Nav Canada: A Model for Commercializing Public Enterprises, Robert Poole Jr. and Viggo Butler discuss the Canadian experience with air traffic control reform and apply it to the US. As the authors note, the nature of air traffic control does not lend itself to a competitive business model, rather it is typically a government-controlled monopoly. This does not, however, preclude government from commercializing air traffic control corporations.
http://www.fcpp.org/pdf/series11.pdf

Protecting the Crowns: The Role and Value of Public Enterprise in BC

Sylvia Fuller’s report Protecting the Crowns: The Role and Value of Public Enterprise in BC, examines the increasing privatization of Crown Corporations in British Columbia. Fuller claims the privatization of public enterprises is a key component of the neo-liberal agenda that calls for a reduction of government intervention in the economy. She also argues that media reports, which focus almost entirely on the necessity of privatization, are a driving force behind the elimination of public enterprises.
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/documents/BC_Office_Pubs/pr...

Public Power and the Political Economy of Electricity Competition: The Case of BC Hydro

Public Power and the Political Economy of Electricity Competition: The Case of BC Hydro, by Marjorie Griffin Cohen of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, argues against a competitive electricity market in British Columbia. Until recently, according to Cohen, it has been accepted that electricity is best provided by large-scale, highly regulated monopolies. (In Canada this meant the public sector, which in British Columbia is Hydro BC.) Recently, however, there has been a push for the deregulation and privatization of public monopolies such as Hydro BC based on claims that such a transformation will result in greater choice, improved customer responsiveness, lower prices and less risk.
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/documents/BC_Office_Pubs/pu...

Rerouting the Mail: Why Canada Post is Due for Reform

Edward M. Iacobucci, Michael J. Trebilcock, and Tracey D. Epps contend that Canada Post requires reform in order to meet the challenges and changes of the twenty-first century.
http://www.cdhowe.org/pdf/commentary_243.pdf

Saskatchewan Prosperity: Taking the Next Step

This article by Jason Clemens, Joel Emes and Nadeem Esmail examines the challenges faced by Saskatchewan, offering both short- and long-term policy recommendations. Their main short-term recommendations are to privatize government business enterprises (GBEs, which are akin to Crown Corporations), use the proceeds from these privatizations to reduce the debt, and then to use the accumulated savings to finance the lowering of business taxes. Among their longer-term recommendations: shrinking the size of Saskatchewan’s government, and the continuing privatization of government business enterprises.
http://www.fraserinstitute.ca/admin/books/files/sask-prosp.p...

The State of Public Services in Manitoba 2007. Privatization: The Public Service Trojan Horse

This report analyzes the degree of success of privatization in Manitoba’s public sector. The authors argue there is greater demand for public services due to an aging population, deteriorating infrastructure, expanded immigration, and global commerce.
http://policyalternatives.ca/documents/Manitoba_Pubs/2007/St...

Unaccountable: The Case of Highway Maintenance Privatization in Alberta

In 1995-96, the Government of Alberta decided to outsource all the maintenance on its 15,000 kilometres of primary highways to primary contractors. Since then, neither the provincial government nor any other body has evaluated the current private maintenance program by comparing it with the previous government-run system.
http://