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Daily List 045

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Thursday 5 March 2015

Economy

Purchasing power parities and the real size of world economies: a comprehensive report of the 2011 international comparison program.

Corporate Author:
World Bank

This publication presents the detailed results of the 2011 International Comparison Programme (ICP). The ICP is a worldwide statistical initiative that aims to estimate Purchasing Power Parities (PPPs) to be used as currency converters to compare the size and price levels of economies around the world. The program involved 199 economies from eight geographic regions: Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Commonwealth of Independent States, Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Asia, Pacific Islands, and the countries of the regular PPP programme managed by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Statistical Office of the European Communities (Eurostat). The work reported herein was conducted by national implementing agencies that collected the necessary data in each economy; the regional coordination agencies that supported country activities, compiled the results and produced regional estimates; and the ICP Global Office, which coordinated and managed the work at the global level. The 2011 ICP results form a crucial information base for research in comparative analysis and policy making. They include PPPs and real expenditure values for GDP and its main aggregates for the reference year 2011 for 199 participating economies.

  • ISBN: 9781464803291
  • 29.95

Energy

Governance of Indian state power utilities: an ongoing journey.

Directions in development (Energy and mining)
Corporate Author:
World Bank
Author:
Sheoli Pargal, Kristy Mayer

This World Bank review, Governance of Indian State Power Utilities: An Ongoing Journey, is a first attempt to systematically examine the quality of corporate and regulatory governance in the Indian power sector. Considering that much of the poor performance of utilities reflected internal and external shortfalls in governance, India's Electricity Act of 2003 mandated unbundling and corporatising the vertically integrated state electricity boards, along with establishing independent regulators at the center and in the states. The aim was to create a more accountable and commercial performance culture. A particular motivation was the need to keep the state government at arm's length from utilities and regulators alike. This review assesses aspects of corporate governance that would be expected to increase the internal and external accountability of utilities; the institutional design of state-level regulation; and the extent to which regulators have implemented key elements of their mandate. In addition, it examines the correlation between the adoption of recommended corporate governance practices and utility performance, and between regulatory governance and utility performance. It finds that while unbundling the electricity boards has progressed quite well on paper, actual separation and functional independence of the unbundled entities is considerably less than it appears - and clearly identifying the contributions of individual entities in the service value chain and holding them accountable for their performance remains difficult. Corporatisation has been unable to insulate utilities from state interference because boards remain state dominated, lack sufficient decision-making authority, and are rarely evaluated on performance. Also, the regulatory environment has not sufficiently pushed utilities to improve performance. State electricity regulatory commissions have been established in all states, but a lack of accountability and autonomy and limited technical capacity have restricted their ability to create an independent, transparent, and unbiased governance framework for the sector that balances consumer and investor/utility interests.

  • ISBN: 9781464803031
  • 22.95

Energy

Implementation of electricity market reform: eighth report of session 2014-15: report, together with formal minutes relating to the report.

House of Commons papers (2014-15) - 664.
Corporate Author:
Energy and Climate Change Committee
Author:
Tim Yeo (chairman)

The Government's flagship Electricity Market Reform was designed to drive investment in our energy infrastructure and manage the transition towards generating low-carbon, secure and cost-effective electricity. After years of planning, the Government has successfully put in place the necessary framework for the first Capacity Market and Contract-for-Difference (CfD) auctions under EMR, and DECC, National Grid and the Low Carbon Contracts Company have been helpful in preparing industry in the run-up to the auctions. However, the speed at which participants have had to assimilate the complex policies have made it a challenging environment for smaller companies, and DECC is still failing to ensure that demand-side response (DSR) providers are given a level playing field in the Capacity Market. In order to avoid paying for more expensive generation capacity that may not be needed in the future, the Government should consider means to further support DSR in the Capacity market, for instance by increasing the contract length of DSR capacity agreements. There also remain strong concerns around National Grid's potential conflicts of interest as EMR Delivery Body, and it is important that clear steps are taken to ensure that it does not have an unfair commercial advantage in future Capacity Market auctions.

  • ISBN: 9780215083760
  • 10.00

Energy

Report on the Committee's inquiry into wind energy: seventh report session 2011/2016. Vol. 1: [Report] together with the minutes of proceedings and minutes of evidence relating to the report.

Northern Ireland Assembly reports - 226/11-16.
Author:
Anna Lo (chairperson)

This report sets out the key conclusions and recommendations of the Committee for the Environment on its inquiry into wind energy, and the evidence considered by the Committee which led to those conclusions. The terms of reference for the inquiry were: (a) To assess the adequacy of PPS18 and related supplementary guidance in regulating proposals for wind turbines on a consistent and strategic basis, with due regard for emerging technologies and independent environmental impact assessment;; (b) To compare the perceived impact of wind turbine noise and separation distances with other jurisdictions and other forms of renewable energy development; and (c) To review the extent of engagement by wind energy providers with local communities and to ascertain how this engagement may best be promoted.

  • ISBN: 9780339605534
  • 21.00

Finance

Beyond crisis: the financial performance of India's power sector.

World Bank studies
Corporate Author:
World Bank
Author:
Mani Khurana, Sudeshna Ghosh Banerjee

In September 2012, the Government of India approved a financial rescue scheme to revive the power generation sector. This bailout amounted to about Rs 1.9 trillion and came in response to banks and financial institutions with large nonperforming loans to the power sector. This is the second bailout of the sector in a decade. The first was in 2002 when the government had to convert the outstanding arrears of state electricity boards to central public sector undertakings. The 2002 bailout came to Rs 400 billion in state government bonds to restore the sector to financial solvency. The recent crisis and consequent bailout is more complicated than the 2002 bailout. Power sector developments in the past two decades have brought new players into a traditionally government-dominated sector, and they have also been implicated in the crisis. India has adopted transformative policy changes since the last bailout. A landmark Electricity Act was passed in 2003, superseding all previous legislation. The strategic intent of the act was to promote competition by opening all possible avenues for the procurement and sale of electric power. Subsidiary policies and enabling legislation have advanced this process. Competitive markets have evolved and attracted new investments, largely from the private sector. The institutional structure of the traditionally public sector-dominated industry has also been transformed. Aside from the entry of new private sector participants, primarily in generation, the state electricity boards (SEBs) were unbundled into generation, transmission, distribution, and, in a few cases, trading segments. State electricity regulatory commissions (SERCs) were also established in all the states. This report presents a diagnostic of the financial and operational performance of segments in the power sector value chain between adoption of the Electricity Act, 2003, and 2011, including the factors that contributed to the recent crisis.

  • ISBN: 9781464803925
  • 22.95

IT and Communications

Pre-appointment hearing with the Government's preferred candidate for Chair of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC): eighth report of session 2014-15: report, together with formal minutes relating to the report.

House of Commons papers (2014-15) - 1087.
Corporate Author:
Science and Technology Committee
Author:
Andrew Miller (chairman)

  • ISBN: 9780215083821
  • 9.00

Science & Technology

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew: seventh report of session 2014-15: report, together with formal minutes relating to the report.

House of Commons papers (2014-15) - 866.
Corporate Author:
Science and Technology Committee
Author:
Andrew Miller (chairman)

The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew announced that financial problems would result in them having to implement a programme that would make over one hundred scientists redundant. This impact, while not entirely due to Government budget reductions, has been exacerbated by how the Government manages the funding of the organisation, something the Committee regards as a recipe for failure. Sudden changes in funding forced a more rapid change in scientific personnel than may otherwise have been necessary causing a public outcry at the risk posed to the Gardens and its world class science functions. The Committee heard that the management of the Gardens consider the current process provides them with little leeway to deal with unexpected expenses and unable to properly plan for the future. There is an urgent need for the management at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew to be given more freedom in how they manage their budget and an indication of funding over the longer term to enable better planning for future problems.

  • ISBN: 9780215083777
  • 6.50

Trade

Trade policy and food security : improving access to food in developing countries in the wake of high world prices.

Directions in development (Trade)
Corporate Author:
World Bank
Author:
Ian Gillson (editor), Amir Fouad (editor)

Since the end of 2010, world food prices have risen sharply reaching a record high in February 2011 and are now once again peaking at historically high levels, with high price volatility, which poses fundamental food security risks for consumers and governments, while discouraging investment in agriculture by farmers and traders.

  • ISBN: 9781464803055
  • 30.50