Governance in state-owned enterprises revisited : the cases of water and electricity in Latin America and the Caribbean


This paper studies the governance structure of state-owned enterprises in the water and electricity sectors of Latin America and the Caribbean. Through a unique dataset, the paper compares 44 leading state companies of the region based on an aggregate measure of corporate governance and six salient aspects of their design: board, chief executive officer, performance orientation, management, legal framework, and transparency/disclosure. The results indicate the need for improvement in areas such as the selection and appointment of directors to the board and the performance-orientation of the enterprises. The paper also highlights the importance of discussing the management of state-owned enterprises in the wider context of public sector governance, with particular focus on accountability. Moreover, it recognizes the role of accountability as central in the management of state-owned enterprises, recommending a better understanding of regulation and performance management. The paper finds a positive correlation between corporate governance and the utilities'performance. Among the different aspects of corporate governance, performance orientation and professional management seem to be the highest contributors to well-performing state-owned enterprises. State-owned enterprises in the electricity sector show higher governance levels than those in the water sector.National Governance,Corporate Law,Private Participation in Infrastructure,Governance Indicators,Banks&Banking Reform

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Research Papers in Economics

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This paper was published in Research Papers in Economics.

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