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Democratic and Market-Economic Reforms in the Postcommunist Countries

Karsten Staehr ()

Eastern European Economics, 2011, vol. 49, issue 5, 5-28

Abstract: This paper examines the impact of European Union (EU) enlargement on the process of political and economic reforms in postcommunist countries. The main result is that both prospective and actual membership have advanced democratic reforms, while the effect on market-economic reforms has been nonexistent or even negative. A measure of the intensity of negotiation of the acquis communautaire chapters shows no effect on political reforms, but likely a negative effect on market-economic reforms. The overall conclusion is that enlargement of the EU has borne out its promise of strengthening democracy in the postcommunist countries, but possibly at the expense of market-oriented economic reform.

Date: 2011
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