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Privatization

Privatization has been the single most challenging and controversial process of reform in former socialist countries. Meant to change quickly ownership from state to the emerging private sector, privatization was burdened in these countries with an array of social and political expectations and almost complete lack of past market experience. This resulted in many different forms of privatization, stops and goes, and almost unanimous public consent that the process was corrupt. Addressing these fundamental challenges of transition the Economic Program started its work on privatization in the very beginning of the process in this country. The task was tremendous – on the one side inform and describe the characteristics of the privatization processes to the general public and on the other analyze the relationships between privatization processes and institutional reform, analyze the impact of post-privatization control mechanisms on enterprise restructuring, measure the effects of privatization process on competitiveness, firm-level performance and other economic and social indicators and advise the government on relevant action.

In the early 1990-ies the Center for the Study of Democracy started publishing the “Monitor of Privatization and Foreign Investment” bulletin, which was based on analyses and articles in major Bulgarian newspapers, specialized in the area of capital markets, labor markets, banking, business and restructuring. The Economic Program still follows closely the remaining large privatization deals and government activities and since 1999 contributes annually its assessment of privatization and post-privatization control to the Corruption Assessment Report of Coalition 2000.


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