Like in most European countries, SGIs in Finland have in recent years been subject to competition and increased private provision or privatisation. This development is motivated by expected cost reductions, by EU-regulations, by ideology and fashion, and in some cases by expected sales revenues. The empirical evaluations of SGI-reforms are few and somewhat contradictory, but the relative success of Finland’s manufacturing SOEs suggests that the public sector is hardly unable to organise efficient SGIs. A number of potential market failures suggest that public ownership should be taken seriously as an alternative to regulation. An increased emphasis on public ownership would be fairly easy to implement in Finland, because the state is still a significant owner, but EU’s policy on liberalisation and unbundling needs an overhaul.
Keywords: Public ownership, privatisation, cost efficiency, social objectives
Jel Code: H11, H42, H44, L33, L90