Regulatory Reform of Public Utilities

Regulatory Reform of Public Utilities

The Japanese Experience

Fumitoshi Mizutani

Covering issues such as deregulation, privatization, organizational reforms, and competition policy, Regulatory Reform of Public Utilities provides a comprehensive summary of regulatory reforms in Japanese public utility industries.

Introduction

Fumitoshi Mizutani

Subjects: economics and finance, public sector economics

Extract

AIM AND SCOPE This book aims to describe regulatory reforms in Japanese public utility industries. Since the early 1990s, when I began research on privatization and regulatory issues as related to Japan, it has become clear how little information about Japanese regulatory reform has been written in English. Because of the lack of information available in English, it has been difficult both to discuss Japanese public utility industries in international forums, and to explain Japanese regulatory reform to foreign students in Japan. This book results from my desire to facilitate understanding in the international community about regulation and reform in Japanese public utility industries, and to create an effective tool for the instruction of such matters to my students at Kobe University. It is my firm belief that information about regulatory reform in Japanese public utility industries should be made more widely known outside Japan. Unlike researchers in the natural sciences, researchers in the social sciences cannot be expected to conduct experiments, and this fact makes it vitally important to observe what consequences result from regulatory reforms, wherever they are undertaken. It is useful to look at regulatory reform in Japan, as the Japanese approach differs markedly from that in other areas, particularly European countries and the U.S. The Japanese approach, characterized by its slow steadiness, has been quite moderate compared to that of Europe, especially the UK. There are many variations in the degree of success among public utility industries, and there have also been failures in regulatory reform....