The Impact of Privatization on Firm's Performance

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1.0 Introduction

Privatization throughout the 1980's has been considered to be the solutions to the problems associated State Owned Enterprise (SOE)s both in the developed and developing economies and even in the socialist economies (Vickers and Yarrow 1995). In reality privatization is an economies policy and other times a political policy that is difficult to achieve mostly when is implemented in a corrupt setting like in most developing countries. However it is wise for a competitive and well regulated business environment structure to be established before privatization takes place.

In recent times there has been a significant increase in the privatization of SOEs. Megginson et al (2004), suggest that political persuasion by government as a result of poor and unsatisfactory financial and operational results by SOEs has cause the transfer of ownership to private investor who will impact their business discipline in order to improve the level of performance for the newly privatized SOEs. While Aktan (1995) suggest that privatization goes beyond the sale of SOEs, assets or shares to individuals or private firms but in a broad meaning, it is to restrict government role and function in providing economic activities and put forward some methods or policies in order to strengthen free market economy.

Privatization is often meant to be the transfer of control and ownership of government asset or firm to private investors. It could be partial or whole, through private placement or public offer of share via the capital market as well as through the distribution of vouchers. The major purpose of privatization is to grow and develop the economic by creating competition that can bring about efficiency ***. It will be right for the logical argument of this research study to compare or examine the different view of academics on what privatization means.

Parker et al (2005) states that privatization is used to cover many arrays of different policies like liberalization, commercialization but in one of its studies, Privatization in Developing Countries: A Review of the Evidence and the Policies lessons, suggest that privatization means the transfers of productive asset from the state to the private sector, but also stressed that the most important factors to be considered is the introduction of effective competition and regulatory measures alongside with existing firms and for government to accept the political changes that occurs when privatization takes place. While, Beesley (1997) suggest that privatization is the formation of a company's act company and the subsequent sale of at least 50percent of the total shares of a company to private shareholders. However it is obvious now that privatization starts with the government transfer of its assets or a controlling share to private investors or shareholders in order to stimulate economic development.

Privatization as an inherent part of government efforts to rationalize the SOEs. It's mostly done to reduce the burden on National Budget, improve efficiency of individual enterprise and ensure wider distribution of business ownership among its citizens and other foreign investors. However in most cases it brings about the introduction of market force (Demand and Supply forces) into the economy. Privatization can be set up to achieve different objectives depending on the Political, Economy and Social condition of each individual Country. This is due to the fact that what is applicable in the UK for instance will most likely not applicable in Russia due to the differences in techniques or method of privatization, general government objectives, SOEs condition, firms sectors activities and the countries characteristics.

According to Bennett (2003) there are different methods used during privatization, either one used has its own advantage and disadvantage. The share option method is the mostly used method, it involves the sales of SOEs through the issue of shares to the...
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