CERE's Runar Brännlund and Patrik Söderholm from LTU were commissioned by the Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications to investigate the effects of the deregulation. They found that there is no link between deregulation and price increase.

The report has resulted in a CERE working paper "Elmarknaden och elprisets utveckling före och efter avregleringen: ekonometriska analyser" (English translation: "Electricity Market and Electricity Price Developments Before and After Deregulation: An Econometric Analysis")

The report states that the price development can be linked to changes in supply and demand for electricity. The increase in price since 2000 is connected to a less available and more expensive capacity in production, from for instance the decrease in nuclear power. Also the water reservoirs amount of water is important in order to see the variations over time, as well as the increased taxes on electricity. The results imply that the consumers have carried most of the tax burden whilst the effects on the producing price have been minor. In short, the Nordic electricity market operates as you would expect of an efficient market.

This report has received quite a bit of media attention and positive reviews as to the economic relevance from the results. A press release from Victor Fladvad at Timbro states that, "In the last 10-15 years, the price increase of electricity cannot be explained from deregulation of the electricity market [...] The aim was to investigate the factors that affect the price of electricity and the impact that deregulation of the electricity market in 1996 had. An important conclusion is that higher taxes and extensive government regulation have been of great importance in raising consumer price". In conclusion, the electricity market operates as you would expect of an efficient market. Both the government and the opposition should see this study as worthwhile due to both sides favoring liberalization following deregulation in 1996. Backing up former work done by Maria Eriksson in her book "Double Game – So Politicians Raised the Price of Electricity, Blamed the Market and Let You Pay" that deregulation serves as a welcome excuse by all parties into rising prices.

Read some of the articles written in regard to this report (only in Swedish)

Ny utredning: Avreglering har inte drivit upp elpriset, Timbro
Elpriset också politisk fråga, helagotland.se
Regeringsutredning konstaterar: Elmarknaden är mycket effektiv, Svensk energi


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