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 ?
Governor Sargent and his transportation secretary, Alan Altshuler (1971-1975), would be instrumental in finding an answer--but only after they could promote a provision in the doomed Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1972.
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Appraisal Review for Federal-Aid Highway Programs is a 1-day session that focuses on applying the principles of appraisal review and understanding how they fit within the Uniform Act and 49 CFR Part 24.
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The new guidance will help agency field personnel and the sponsors of Federal-aid highway projects by clarifying the factors to consider when implementing mitigation banking, such as onsite mitigation rather than offsite, in-kind instead of out-of-kind, and the appropriate use of vegetated buffers and preservation.
Through the survey or information provided by DOT, we determined that 40 of these jurisdictions were operating photo enforcement devices on federal-aid highways.
It includes full funding of the core federal-aid highway program and the transit formula grant program at the levels authorized by the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA).
The notes are secured by the state's share of federal-aid highway reimbursements received from the federal government for construction of approved highway and bridge projects, subject to annual appropriation by the state legislature.
In 1998, the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), authorized the states to retain the federal share of proceeds from the sale or lease of real property that had been purchased with federal-aid funds.
As the Federal-aid Highway Program grew in the years ahead, so too did FHWA's partnerships in Ohio and throughout the nation.
In 1998, the federal government removed the requirement that states convert to metrics on all federal-aid highway projects through the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), thus making conversion to this system optional for states.

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