The establishment of the danish windmill industry—Was it worthwhile?
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The paper examines the welfare effects of the Danish subsidies granted for the electricity production from wind power. This policy has induced a remarkable development of the Danish windmill industry resulting in a dominant position on the world market. The article demonstrates a strong learning-by-doing productivity growth in the Danish windmill industry and it analyzes the costs and benefits of this infant industry case. The costs consist of the efficiency loss from diverting electricity production from using fossil fuels to utilizing wind power. Benefits are the reductions in the environmental damage of using fossil fuels, however, the main benefits are related to the emergence of a new export sector. As the value of the windmill firms at the stock exchange by far exceeds that of the accumulated distorted losses in electricity production, this case demonstrates a successful infant industry strategy. JEL no. D2, L5, L6
KeywordsLearning-by-doing infant industry green subsidies
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