Technical Characteristics and Efficiency of the Indian State Road Transport Undertakings

20 Pages Posted: 2 Jun 2000

See all articles by Sanjay Kumar Singh

Sanjay Kumar Singh

Indian Institute of Management Lucknow

Date Written: March 5, 2000


The aim of this study is twofold. First, it aims to put forward new information concerning the technical characteristics of State Road Transport Undertakings (henceforth, STUs) on the basis of a sample of medium and large-size Indian states. Second, it aims to analyze the level of productive efficiency of those undertakings. It is hoped that results will be useful in evaluating the possible changes in public policies relating to passenger road transport in India. The analysis is based on estimation of a cost function. The sample is made up of a panel data set taking observations of nine STUs that operated during the period 1983-84 to 1996-97. The specified functional form is translogarithmic. The output is measured as revenue pass.-kms. The cost function includes the network length for each STU, hence permitting evidence concerning returns to density and returns to scale. The use of panel data permits us to estimate the cost function, taking into account that each STU is affected by the specific characteristics of each individual state, the different features of the network and by different levels of productive efficiency. The long-run economies of scale is calculated by taking into account the effects of size on the fixed costs. Finally, we analyzed the relative efficiency of the STUs and the factors, which are most likely to affect it.

JEL Classification: L92, L98, L32, L12, C33, C23, R42, R48

Suggested Citation

Singh, Sanjay Kumar, Technical Characteristics and Efficiency of the Indian State Road Transport Undertakings (March 5, 2000). Available at SSRN: or

Sanjay Kumar Singh (Contact Author)

Indian Institute of Management Lucknow ( email )

Lucknow, 226013
+91 522 273 6637 (Phone)
+91 522 273 4005 (Fax)


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