subsidy

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Subsidy

Financial assistance provided by a government to another entity, usually a business or industry. Subsidies are given to keep otherwise unprofitable ventures in business; for example, a family farm unable to compete with agribusiness may receive a subsidy from the government to maintain operations. Subsidies may also exist as a protectionist measure to make domestic goods less expensive than imports. Proponents of subsidies argue that they maintain employment in the domestic economy while critics state that they distort the market and make it less efficient. See also: Bailout.

subsidy

the provision of finance and other resources by the government or a firm to support a business activity or person. Subsidies can be direct (cash grants, interest free LOANS etc.) or indirect (DEPRECIATION write-offs, RENT rebates) and can be used for a variety of purposes. They include:
  1. PRODUCTION subsidies: the subsidization of suppliers by government to encourage them to increase the output of particular products by partially offsetting their production costs or even financing losses. The objective may be to expand production at a low price of some product which is deemed to be ‘essential’ (for example a particular foodstuff thereby also subsidizing consumers); or, for example, to assist in the start-up of a new firm (see ENTERPRISE INVESTMENT SCHEME) or industry (see INDUSTRIAL POLICY), and encourage firms to locate in particular areas (see REGIONAL POLICY). Also such subsidies are used to support failing firms and declining industries to facilitate orderly restructuring. See PROTECTIONISM;
  2. EXPORT subsidies: the subsidization by the government of exports in general or of a particular product which is exported, as a means of assisting the country's balance of payments;
  3. EMPLOYMENT subsidies: the subsidization of wages by the government as an incentive to businesses to provide more job opportunities, thereby reducing the level of unemployment in the economy;
  4. INCOME subsidies: the subsidization of persons through government transfer payment systems (for example, social security benefits) in order to allow them to enjoy some minimum standard of living;
  5. cross-subsidization: businesses themselves regularly practise internal or cross-subsidization as a means of expanding their activities, for example, using the profits generated by established products to finance NEW-PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT and DIVERSIFICATION into new-product markets.

subsidy

the provision of finance and other resources to support a business activity or person by the government. Subsidies can be direct (cash grants, interest-free LOANS, etc.) or indirect (depreciation write-offs, rent rebates) and can be used for a variety of purposes, including:
  1. PRODUCTION subsidies: the subsidization of suppliers by government to encourage them to increase the output of particular products by partially offsetting their production costs or even financing losses. The objective may be to expand production of some product at a low price that is deemed to be ‘essential’ (e.g. a particular foodstuff, thereby also subsidizing consumers); or, for example, to assist in the start-up of a new firm (see ENTERPRISE INVESTMENT SCHEME) or industry (see INDUSTRIAL POLICY) and encourage firms to locate in particular areas (see REGIONAL POLICY). In the first cases, subsidies are used as an instrument of income redistribution by reducing the price of products such as bread and milk that figure prominently in the budget of lower income groups or by directly subsidizing incomes.
  2. EXPORT subsidies: the subsidization of a particular product that is exported, or exports in general, by the government as a means of assisting the country's balance of payments.
  3. EMPLOYMENT subsidies: the subsidization of wages by the government as an incentive to businesses to provide more job opportunities, thereby reducing the level of unemployment in the economy INCOME subsidies: the subsidization of persons through government transfer payment systems (for example, social security benefits) in order to allow them to enjoy some minimum standard of living.

Subsidies encourage increased output of favoured products but distort domestic RESOURCE ALLOCATION processes in general and can adversely affect international trade. See REDISTRIBUTION-OFINCOME PRINCIPLE OF TAXATION, PROTECTIONISM, CROSS-SUBSIDIZATION.

See also BOSTON MATRIX.

subsidy

Benefits granted to persons or groups in order to encourage behavior or outcomes deemed important to society. Rent subsidies encourage construction of adequate affordable housing because the owner can be ensured of an income stream as long as the housing meets government requirements.The same subsidy encourages better consumer choices because of the availability of affordable alternatives. Tax credits to contractors for energy-efficient construction are subsidies to encourage the use of energy-efficient alternatives.

References in periodicals archive ?
By 2000 these fixed payments had reached $22 billion, about three times the pre-reform level of 1996, according to the 2002 report Landowners' Riches: The Distribution of Agricultural Subsidies by Ohio State University agricultural economist Barry K.
Despite its popular appeal, people's economic understanding of subsidies is limited at best.
Abdullah added that 70 million Egyptians benefit from the system of subsidies, including the subsidised prices of energy, noting that commodity subsidies cost EGP 17bn for 17 million households, with an average of four family members per household.
The flagship World Energy Outlook (WEO) has for many years been analysing fossil-fuel consumption subsidies and examining the strategies and benefits of phasing them out, including in the latest WEO 2016.
Subsidies for gasoline and electricity constitute the biggest chunk of the energy subsidies.
Total subsidies and transfers cost the UAE government $17 billion in 2014, accounting for 12 per cent of total government spending.
Subsidies for petroleum products, electricity, natural gas, and coal reached $480 billion in 2011 (0.
Jaitley is in favour of rationalising subsidies and transferring more public spending into investment in highways, ports and Railways to spur economic growth.
TAHRAN (CyHAN)- The Iranian government and parliament have agreed to cut current public subsidies by about $1.
Also, Oman government has doubled the price of natural gas supplied to industries, which will help the government to reduce subsidies for natural gas.
Both Egypt and Yemen have suffered four years of protracted political conflict and economic stagnation and fuel subsidies account for more than 20 per cent of government spending in both countries.