Natural resources are a special kind of property, because in a sense they belong to the public. But their extraction is also possible by private corporations. There are in fact pros and cons to both. Private ownership has been shown to be more efficient and more profitable. But public ownership may be better at benefiting the region or country the resources are located in.
Of course, efficiency and profitability are important, but a country’s goal should be to maximize the welfare of its citizens. So what happens if we take a look at the effects of resource ownership on economic growth? Is private ownership still preferable to public ownership?
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