The Economics and Political Economy of Energy Subsidies
Organiser: Jon Strand
Keynote Speaker: Ian Parry, International Monetary Fund
Date: 21 - 22 July 2014
Subsidies to fossil energies are largely wasteful as they serve to increase carbon emissions, weaken public budgets and importers’ energy security, and in most cases impact income distribution adversely. Reform of energy subsidy policies is sorely needed in many countries, and is an important international policy goal. But although much work, including by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, is put into implementing such reform, it is still very difficult to achieve. An objective of this workshop is to stimulate academic interest in this topic, and serve as a forum for new related research. It will deal with impacts of fossil energy subsidies, locally, nationally, regionally and globally; reforms required to change them; and reasons why fossil energy pricing reforms are difficult to implement (“the political economy of energy subsidies”). Contributed papers can focus on subsidies that are mostly consumer-directed (most common in lower-income countries); or mostly benefitting producers (more common in OECD countries). Papers can be mainly analytical, mainly empirical, or combinations; can have either mainly an economics or a political science perspective; and can focus on energy importers or energy exporters, including relations to the “resource curse”.