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Soc. Sci. 2018, 7(4), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci7040057

The European Natural Gas Market Reforms Revisited: Differentiating between Regulatory Output and Outcome

1
Department of Political Science, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg 69115, Germany
2
Bavarian School of Public Policy, Technical University of Munich, München 80333, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 26 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 April 2018 / Published: 4 April 2018
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Abstract

The article addresses the question of how successful the European natural gas reforms of 1998, 2003, and 2009 have been in terms of increasing competition in the sector. We argue that regulatory provisions are policy output variables, which as such do not affect competition directly. However, successful reforms can have an impact on the market structure, which might lead to increased competition and price reductions. Thus, it is pivotal to differentiate between policy output and outcome variables. Therefore, we first conduct a cross-sectional analysis of the regulatory impact on the market structure. Second, we apply error-correction models to test whether changes in the market structure affected the price development. Our findings suggest that the market reforms were successful in terms of liberalizing the sector, whereas the market structure did not affect the natural gas prices. Thus, we see a “successful failure” of the European natural gas market reforms. View Full-Text
Keywords: energy policy; European public policy; gas prices energy policy; European public policy; gas prices
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Herweg, N.; Wurster, S.; Dümig, K. The European Natural Gas Market Reforms Revisited: Differentiating between Regulatory Output and Outcome. Soc. Sci. 2018, 7, 57.

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