Monopolies: examples in the world and in Russia
In economic theory there are manydifferent terms. However, the most capacious of them is the concept of monopoly. How correctly the use of this term and what its semantic meaning in one or another case depends directly on the context. This is due to the different interpretation of this concept.
The essence of the term
The word "monopoly" in Greekmeans "mono" - one and "polio" - I sell. This term means such a situation on the market, when only one firm operates on it. At the same time, there is no competition at all or no similar goods or services are produced by anyone.
The first monopolies in the history of mankind wereDue to state sanctions. The government adopted laws giving a privileged right to any firm to trade with one or another commodity. However, the term "monopoly" has many definitions. According to one version, this is a certain state of the market, when the state or organization is given the exclusive right to conduct economic activities on it. In this case, the monopolist, in the absence of competition, itself determines the value of its product or has a very significant effect on pricing policy. This definition of the term is a qualitative characteristic of the market.
The main signs of monopoly
Experts identify the following situations, which indicate the existence of a single economic firm:
- the presence of one or a very large seller;
- the availability of products that do not have competitive counterparts;
- the existence of high threshold criteria for the entry of new enterprises into a similar segment of the market.
There are other interpretations applied to the term "monopoly". For example, this concept can mean a separate company, which is characterized by priority in the management of a particular market segment.
Variants of interpretations
The term "monopoly" is understood as:
- the state of either the market or one of its segments, in which only one player is present;
- The only company that produces and sells products created by it;
- The market with the only enterprise-leader present on it.
The uniqueness of a company is determined by many criteria. However, the most basic of them is the level of competition. It must be either low enough or absent altogether.
There are different kinds of monopolies. However, their classification is very conditional. This is due to the fact that some forms of monopolies can simultaneously belong to several of their types. So, allocate:
- a natural monopoly when an economic entity occupies a privileged position in the market;
- a pure monopoly when there is only one provider of a certain type of service or goods;
- conglomerate - these are several subjects of a heterogeneous type, but mutually financially integrated (for example, ZAO Gazmetall can serve as an example in Russia);
- closed monopoly, which has protection against competition in the form of legal restrictions, patents and copyrights;
- open monopoly, which is different in that there is only one supplier of the product on the market that does not have special protection against competition.
In addition to the above, there are other types of monopolies. Let us consider some of the types of this phenomenon.
Quite often in the market there is such situation whenthe demand for a particular product is met by one or more companies. In this case, there is a natural monopoly. Its reasons lie in the peculiarities of customer service and technological process.
In any state of our planet there are natural monopolies. Examples are telephone services, energy supply, transport, etc.
Natural monopolies also work in the sphere:
- transportation of oil products, gas and oil through pipelines of main importance;
- services to provide the public with public postal and electrical communication.
Take, for example, the power industry. There is also a natural monopoly here. Examples in Russia are 700 existing CHPPs, GRES and HPPs, which were merged into an open joint-stock company of RAO UES Russia. The company was formed in 1992, when fifty most modern power plants were withdrawn from the regional energies of AO-energo. To date, RAO UES Russia owns the entire network of power lines in the country.
The gas industry also did not passnatural monopoly. Examples in Russia are eight gas production associations, as well as thirteen transport regional transportation companies united in RAO Gazprom. The share of this company accounts for one fourth of all revenues to the state budget.
Gazprom accounts for 56% of theEastern and 21% - to Western Europe. He also has assets abroad, which are shares in companies that own gas distribution and gas transmission systems.
The natural monopoly in Russia israilway industry. The share of the track facilities of Russian Railways, as well as the turnover of goods, is 80% of all traffic in the country. The specific weight and passenger traffic is high. It is 41%.
There are other natural monopolies in Russia. Examples of this are OJSC Rosneft, OJSC Rostelecom, etc.
Examples of monopoly in the world of a natural species differ slightly from Russian ones. In the legislative acts of Western countries the following terms are used:
- public service;
- service, necessary to all;
- network service, etc.
So, in the UK there is no legalfixing the term "natural monopolies". Examples of societies that are "necessary for everyone" are related to railway structures, transmission and distribution of electricity, water supply and sanitation. And in France the term "natural monopolies" is fixed by the notion of "commercial and industrial public services". These are organizations working in the field of communications, rail transportation and electricity supply.
The natural monopoly in Germany isa situation where one company is able to meet the demand in the market, providing a product or service with a low, but at the same time providing a normal level of profitability at a price. This applies to pipeline and railway transport.
This concept is very capacious. According to some experts, the natural monopoly described above is one of the subspecies of the economic (artificial) monopoly. In this case, we are talking about such companies that managed to win a leading position in the market.
How does an artificial monopoly arise? Examples of the emergence of dominant enterprises indicate the probability of two ways to achieve the goal. The first of these lies in the successful development of production, as well as in the concentration of capital, and, as a consequence, in increasing the scale of activity. The second way is faster. Its basis is the centralization of capital, that is, the voluntary unification or absorption of bankrupt organizations. At the same time, the mass of small and medium-sized enterprises turns into a larger one. There is an artificial monopoly. It covers a certain segment of the market and has no competitors.
Currently widespreadreceived artificial monopolies. Examples of such associations are concerns, trusts, syndicates and cartels. Every entrepreneur seeks to win a monopoly position. It allows you to eliminate a number of risks and problems associated with competitors, and also take a privileged position on the market. In this case, the monopolist is able to influence other market participants and impose their own conditions on them.
The creation of an artificial monopoly canto happen in another way. The state by its legislative acts is able to grant the right to produce products or provide services to only one enterprise. Thus, artificial monopolies also arise. Examples of this are in most countries of the world. These are organizations based on state preferences. An example in Russia is the company Mosgortrans. It provides the capital with ground transportation. At the same time, the government does not allow work on the market to other carriers, its competitors.
Its creation is carried out with the help oflegislative barriers. The legal documents define the commodity boundaries of the monopoly entity and the forms of control over it. At the same time, one company is given an exclusive right to carry out one or another type of activity. These organizations are public. They are subordinated to the commanders, ministries, and so on. State monopoly groups enterprises of one industry. This leads to a lack of competition in the sales market.
There are state monopolies in Russia. Examples of activities regulated by legislative acts are listed below. They include:
- activities related to trafficking in psychotropic and narcotic drugs;
- work in the field of military-technical regulation;
- issue of cash and the organization of their circulation on the territory of Russia;
- branding and testing products made of precious metals;
- production and turnover of ethyl alcohol;
- export and import of individual goods.
Where is the statemonopoly? Examples of the use of administrative power can be seen in various fields. This is the Bank of Russia. He has a monopoly on the organization, circulation and issue of cash. This right is given to him by legislative acts.
In the field of health, there is alsostate monopoly. Examples concern the production of medicines. Thus, the FSUE "Moscow Endocrine Plant" possesses exclusive rights. He produces drugs that are used in various areas of health care. This is psychiatry and gynecology, endocrinology and ophthalmology.
In the space industry there is also a state monopoly. In Russia, examples relate to various objects in this sphere, the brightest of them is the Baikonur cosmodrome.
Sometimes in the market there is a situation when inconsumer sphere there is a new company offering a newly created product that has no analogues. This is a pure monopoly. Examples of such situations are currently scarce. Today this phenomenon is rather rare. More often, several firms compete with each other. At present, as a rule, only with the support of the state can there exist a pure monopoly. Examples can be given only for subjects offering their products on local markets. The simplest of them, when the company dictates its price to consumers. However, the cost of services or goods of pure monopolies can be controlled by the state. At the same time, such business entities will be protected from entering into the scope of their activities of other sellers by state legislative acts.
A typical example of a pure monopoly can beactivity of the company "Aluminum Company" (USA). In 1945, this firm completely controlled the extraction of bauxite in America. This natural fossil is the main raw material for the production of aluminum.
A vivid example of a net monopoly in Russia is localcompanies for electricity and gas supply of settlements. In addition, these are companies that have water networks. Utilities are the most successful examples of such business entities throughout the world.
In the market there can be a situation whenany company begins the production of a completely new product. But unlike a pure monopoly, the state does not protect it from possible competitors. In this case, there is an open monopoly, which can be attributed to one of the types of monopoly net. For some time the firm is the only supplier of a new product. Competitors of such companies appear on the market a little later.
If you give examples of open monopoly, then it is worth remembering the company Apple, which was the first to offer the consumer a touch technology.
Sometimes in the market there is a situation when the goodsoffers a single seller, and demand exists from a single buyer. This is a bilateral monopoly. In this situation, the buyer and the seller know each other. At the same time, they conduct the purchase and sale of finished products under strict price control. Examples of a bilateral monopoly relate to such situations when a firm sells its goods to the state. This is the purchase of weapons by the Ministry of Defense, and the opposition of a single trade union to any one employer.
Classification of monopolies is conditional. Some companies are very difficult to attribute to one type or another of economic entities. Many of them belong to several types of different monopolies. An example of this can serve as business entities that service telephone networks. This includes gas and electric companies. All of them have signs not only of a natural, but also of a closed monopoly. Examples can relate to other areas of activity.
However, often the position of the business entitycardinally changes. So, the existing advantages of natural monopolies are not their integral part. The situation on the market of such business entities may undergo changes when developing the latest technologies by competitors. The situation of closed monopolies is also not stable. All the benefits and privileges granted to them can be canceled by the newly introduced legislative acts.