Holes in the Water: The Reform of Water Services and Competition in Italy
Competition and Regulation in Network Industries, Vol. 12, No. 2, pp. 173-187, June 2011
20 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2011 Last revised: 21 Jun 2011
Date Written: January 25, 2011
The paper provides a survey of some of the main tenets of water management in Italy, following the path of a rather ambitious reform launched in 1994 aimed at establishing an integrated water service for civil use. Also, by taking into account recent literature related to vulnerabilities typical of water services and their liberalization process, the paper analyzes some of the biggest difficulties and failures faced by the Italian reform of the water sector, such as regulatory fragmentation and conflicts of interests spreading among public local administrations and companies providing the services, according to a recent survey provided by the National Supervising Water Committee. Finally, a specific insight into competition drivers of the water industry is given by means of a series of recent antitrust decisions taken from the archives of the Italian Competition Authority.
Keywords: Water services, Italy, public utilities, regulatory reform, competition, antitrust
JEL Classification: D22, H70, K21, L95
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation