Changing Roles of the State in Telecommunications
36 Pages Posted: 13 May 2011
Date Written: March 31, 2010
Since the nineteenth century, the state has played different roles in telecommunications, from owner-operator and regulator to facilitator of private sector activities. Whereas direct government involvement has diminished since the 1980s, recent years have witnessed renewed demands for intervention and a stronger role of the state. This article reviews the different roles of the state, weighs their advantages and disadvantages, and assesses the state's future involvement. It concludes that a return to broad state ownership in telecommunications is unlikely. However, the balance between private and state activity has been and will continue to be pragmatically realigned, resulting in new institutional arrangements that might better take advantage of the comparative strengths of the public and the private sector.
Keywords: State ownership, Privatization, Liberalization, Regulatory reform, Industrial policy
JEL Classification: L32, L33, L50, L96, L98
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation