Do you pay a fair price for electricity? Consumers’ satisfaction and utility reform in the EU
Carlo Vittorio FIORIO
The research question addressed by this paper is a simple one: are European consumers happy with the electricity supply services after two decades of reforms? We focus on self-assessed consumers’ satisfaction with electricity prices as reported in three waves of Eurobarometer survey, 2000-2002-2004, conditioning on some indicators of public ownership, vertical integration and entry regulation across the EU-15. Our results do not support a systematic association between consumers’ satisfaction and the complete reform package made of privatisation, vertical disintegration and liberalisation. These results, which have been extensively tested for robustness, raise various concerns about the way the reform processes have been undertaken and provides some warnings about possible effects on public support for public utility reforms.
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