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30 years of East-West integration in Europe: reflections on what we have learned and on challenges ahead

Michael Landesmann ()

Focus on European Economic Integration, 2019, issue Q3/19, 29-40

Abstract: This paper gives an overview of lessons learned from 30 years of experience of East-West integration in Europe. It covers issues related to the economics of transition of the Central, Eastern and Southeastern European (CESEE) economies after 1989, the relatively fast processes of institutional and economic catching-up, trade and production integration and the role of foreign direct investment (FDI). It also analyzes difficult labor market adjustments linked to structural change and changing skill demands, the strong forces leading to regional economic agglomeration and the recurrent difficulties in a range of economies in dealing with macroeconomic, particularly current account, imbalances. Finally, this contribution discusses the issues of reform reversals and political regression taking place in some CESEE countries and the political-economic analysis necessary to deal with these phenomena.

Keywords: East-West integration in Europe; Central; Eastern and Southeastern Europe; CESEE; transition experience; Eastern enlargement; trade integration; external imbalances (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F02 F15 F43 F55 N14 P51 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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