Network ownership and optimal tariffs for natural gas transport
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- Working papers (SNF) 
This paper addresses the issue of national optimal tariffs for transportation of natural gas in a setting where national gas production in its entirety is exported to end-user markets abroad. In a situation where the transportation network is owned altogether by a vertically integrated national gas producer, it is shown that the optimal tariff depends on the ownership structure in the integrated transportation company as well as in the non-facility based gas company. There are two reasons why it is possibly optimal with a mark-up on marginal transportation costs. First, there is a premium on public revenue if domestic taxation is distorting. Second, with incomplete national taxation of rents from the gas sector, the transportation tariffs can serve as a second best way of appropriating rents accruing to foreigners. In a situation where the network is run as a separate entity subject to a rate of return regulation, it will be optimal to discriminate the tariffs between shippers for the usual Ramseyean, reasons.