Where Does the Public Sector End and the Private Sector Begin?

Author/Editor:

Ian Lienert

Publication Date:

June 1, 2009

Electronic Access:

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate

Summary:

The boundary between the public and private sectors can be defined on the basis of ownership of institutional units. Nonmarket government-owned entities and corporations that are owned or controlled by government units belong to the public sector. “Economic ownership” is more important than majority ownership. Joint ventures, public-private partnerships, and social insurance funds (including for public employees) can be unambiguously allocated to the public or private sector on the basis of international public sector accounting standards. Boundary problems within the public sector are just as acute as those between the public and private sectors, mainly because of ambiguities in distinguishing “market” from “nonmarket” activities.

Series:

Working Paper No. 09/122

Subject:

English

Publication Date:

June 1, 2009

ISBN/ISSN:

9781451872699/1018-5941

Stock No:

WPIEA2009122

Price:

$18.00 (Academic Rate:$18.00)

Format:

Paper

Pages:

30

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