Monday, February 15, 2010
Posted by D. Daniel Sokol.
D. Daniel Sokol (University of Florida - Law) analyzes Competition Policy and Comparative Corporate Governance of State-Owned Enterprises.
ABSTRACT: The legal origins literature overlooks a key area of corporate governance - the governance of state-owned enterprises (“SOEs”). There are key theoretical differences between SOEs and publicly-traded corporations. In comparing the differences of both internal and external controls of SOEs, none of the existing legal origins allow for effective corporate governance monitoring. Because of the difficulties of undertaking a cross-country quantitative review of the governance of SOEs, this Article examines, through a series of case studies, SOE governance issues among postal providers. The examination of postal firms supports the larger theoretical claim about the weaknesses of SOE governance across legal origins. In itself, the lack of effective corporate governance would not be fatal if some of the SOE’s inefficient and societal-welfare-reducing behavior could be remedied under antitrust law. However, a review of antitrust decisions on the issue of predatory pricing by SOEs reveals that antitrust is equally ineffective in its attempts to monitor SOEs. This Article concludes by identifying a number of devices to reduce the current inadequacies of both antitrust and corporate governance of SOEs.