Publication: Improving Water Services Through Competition
Water sector reforms in recent years have concentrated on involving the private sector in the operation and management of monopoly water utilities. Much effort has gone into regulation to stop utilities from abusing their monopoly power, but relatively little into considering ways to reduce that monopoly power. This Note explains how to bring competitive pressures to bear in the water industry. It shows that while it can be difficult to implement conventional product market competition, this option should not be ruled out. Better, cheaper water services can also be achieved by increasing the use of competition in purchasing inputs, relying on competitive bidding for the right to supply an area, and benchmarking rival utilities in different areas.
“Webb, Michael; Ehrhardt, David. 1998. Improving Water Services Through Competition. Viewpoint: Public Policy for the Private Sector; Note No. 164. © World Bank, Washington, DC. http://openknowledge.worldbank.org/entities/publication/683448c7-bb46-5cfd-aaca-1fb736fbb6b6 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”
Other publications in this report series
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PublicationExport Competitiveness: Why Domestic Market Competition Matters(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-06)This review of the empirical literature shows that industries with more intense domestic competition will export more. Competition law enforcement can be traced to export performance and is complementary to trade reforms. Pro-competition market regulation that reduces restrictions and promotes competition, where it is viable, is an important determinant for trade. The elimination of barriers to entry and rivalry, and a level playing field in upstream sectors contributes to export competitiveness in downstream manufacturing sectors. In some sectors, effective competition policy can directly lower trade costs.
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PublicationSmall Business Tax Regimes(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-02)Simplified tax regimes for micro and small enterprises in developing countries are intended to facilitate voluntary tax compliance. However, survey evidence suggests that small business taxation based on simplified bookkeeping or turnover is sometimes perceived as too complex for microenterprises in countries with high illiteracy levels. Very simple fixed tax regimes not requiring any books or records tend to be overly popular but prone to abuse. System reforms will require more precise tailoring of the simplified regimes to their target beneficiaries, coupled with strong compliance management to detect and deter abuse. The overall objective of simplified taxation for micro and small enterprises (MSEs) in developing countries is generally to facilitate voluntary tax compliance and remove obstacles in moving toward business formalization and growth.
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