Successes and Failures in Regulating and Deregulating Utilities

Successes and Failures in Regulating and Deregulating Utilities

Evidence from the UK, Europe and the USA

Edited by Colin Robinson

This book is the latest annual review of utility regulation and deregulation, published in association with the Institute of Economic Affairs and the London Business School

Chapter 2: Road networks: efficiency, externalities and consumer choice

David Starkie

Subjects: economics and finance, competition policy, public finance, public sector economics


21 features of the road scheme, called an Appraisal Summary Table (AST), of which economic criteria are but a part. Another strand of a more integrated approach is the consideration of a number of large road schemes in the context of multimodal studies carried out on a corridor or regional basis. These studies, first announced in 1999, are intended to consider the provision of more road capacity as one of a number of options. These options also include improving public transport to facilitate modal transfer and the introduction of network-wide tolls. Studies that have so far reported appear to suggest that public transport improvements would not contribute significantly to reducing congestion on the trunk road network, but that tolling would be an effective way of doing so. Another notable policy development is the government proposal to modernize the taxation of the road haulage industry by introducing a form of lorry road user charging. This was announced in November 2000. A consultation paper on this proposal was released at the end of 2001 and a progress report earlier in 2002. Consideration is being given to charges varying according to the characteristics of the lorry, by time of day and by type of road, with a suggested implementation date of spring 2006. ANALYTICAL STUDIES A Commercial View of Roads Undertaken in parallel with these developments in policy have been a number of research studies examining in greater depth current road taxation and proposals for pricing road use. One strand of these...

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