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Ownership Reform and Corporate Governance: The Slovak Privatisation Process in 1990-1996
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
1999 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Since 1989, there has been a period of rapid change of the economies of the former Eastern bloc. Within a few years, the majority of the formerly centrally administered economies had begun restructuring their economic systems, including the privatisation. of formerly state-owned enterprises. This process developed differently in different countries, depending among other things on their historical traditions and the momentum of their social, political and economic transformations.

This doctoral dissertation examines the privatisation of large-scale industrial enterprises in Slovakia prior to 1997. In particular the thesis analyses the changing political and institutional framework governing the process and method of privatisation; and how the governance of firms was affected by the new markets and ownership- and control-structures that were established. Special attention is paid to the role played by investment funds andinvestment-companies established as a consequence of voucher privatisation. The research problem is approached both from an aggregate national level and from the enterprise level. The thesis includes a number of case studies of enterprises in Slovakia that underwent privatisation, and of investment funds that emerged to take part in the process. In addition, two panel-data sets were constructed for the sake of statistical analysis.

The study points to the drastic changes in privatisation policy and its enactment, under different governments. It leads to the conclusion that privatisation is a highly political process, whose economic effects cannot be separated from its distributional effects. This politicised nature of ownership reform is shown to have some negative side-effects with regard to the development of well-functioning governance structures. It is, for example, pointed to that the capital market, as it developed during the period of study, was highly non-transparent,characterised by high transaction costs and insider-trading. The study also documents an increasingly concentrated ownership structure of the Slovak industry and relates it to the changes in privatisation policy. In the final analysis attention is drawn to a recurring theme in the study, namely the issues related to the relative stability and durability of the institutional set-up. In many cases an insecurity about "the rules of the game" led to short-term incentives and opportunism on behalf of the economic and political agents.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 1999.
Uppsala Studies in Economic History, ISSN 0346-6493 ; 49
Keyword [en]
Economic history, privatisation, ownership reform, corporate governance, the Slovak Republic, restructuring, property rights, financial sector development, economic transition, communist economies, path dependence, institutional economics, investment funds, transformation
National Category
Economic History
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-15699ISBN: 91-554-4578-0 (print)OAI: diva2:507174
Public defence
1999-11-20, Auditorium Minus, Gustavianum, Uppsala, 10:15
Available from: 2012-03-13 Created: 2012-03-02 Last updated: 2016-10-10Bibliographically approved

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Olsson, Mikael
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