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2000 Documento de Trabajo #69

Pobreza y distribución del ingreso en Chile (década del 90) (Poverty and income distribution in Chile during the 1990s)

This paper makes an analysis of subsidies in Chile`s public utilities. Rates rebalancing have practically eliminated cross subsidies, and current subsidy programs are funded from the national budget. Over the last decade in particular, significant efforts have been made to extend public services to rural populations, and a consumption subsidy for potable water currently benefits 17% of the population. The Chilean experience shows it is possible to design subsidies targeted to the poor that do not cause deadweight losses, and at relatively low cost to the State. The elimination of cross subsidies has facilitated competition in some public services. Moreover, putting rural infrastructure projects out to public tender, whenever possible, has made it possible to substantially reduce government expenditure.

Pablo Serra