State‑Owned Enterprise Functioning and Governance
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Publish date: 2014-08-31
Gospodarka Narodowa 2014;272(4):5–26
The article looks at various models of how state­‑owned enterprises (SOEs) function in various regions of the world and how they are managed. According to the authors, state­‑owned enterprises remain an essential component of modern economies, especially in post­‑socialist countries and in the developing world. This is unlikely to change anytime soon, the authors say. They analyze the principles underlying the functioning of SOEs in various countries as well as the principles of state governance, concluding that these principles vary considerably. The authors analyze SOE sectors using a number of criteria. Among these is the origin of the enterprises and their objectives, including non‑economic functions. From this perspective, Bałtowski and Kwiatkowski identify six models: Anglo­‑Saxon, European (continental), post­‑socialist, Chinese, Russian, and one applied in emerging economies. Subsequently, the authors investigate SOE sectors in terms of what principles and tools governments use in exercising their ownership function. From this angle, Bałtowski and Kwiatkowski identify three governance models: centralized, decentralized, and dual. Yet another typological criterion used by the authors is the extent of state ownership. On this basis, in the final part of the article, Bałtowski and Kwiatkowski formulate conclusions and recommendations for the Polish economy. These are related to the overall role of the government in the economy as well as the economic and non‑economic objectives of state­‑owned enterprises and the effectiveness of the state governance system. Solutions in these areas should be based on the best international practices, the authors say.