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Boosting European Competitiveness

Boosting European Competitiveness

The Role of CESEE Countries

Edited by Marek Belka, Ewald Nowotny, Pawel Samecki and Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald

In the global financial crisis, competitiveness gaps between Euro area countries caused additional strain. This book discusses the various dimensions of competitiveness, with a special focus on Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe. With products becoming ever more technically sophisticated and global interconnectedness on a relentless rise, quality, customer orientation and participation in production networks are as important as relative costs and prices. For Europe to proceed with convergence and to resist global competitive pressures, policies to boost productivity and innovation are therefore vital.

Chapter 13: Convergence of ‘new’ EU member states: past, present and future

Bas B. Bakker and Krzysztof Krogulski

Subjects: economics and finance, financial economics and regulation, international economics, money and banking


This chapter discuss the economic convergence of the formerly communist Central Eastern European (CEE) European Union (EU) member states’ economies with the rest of the EU. Convergence has been rapid in the pre-crisis years, and has continued at a slower pace post-2008. However, continued catch-up may be more challenging as the ‘low-hanging fruit’ has been picked. Productivity and employment are no longer very low, while unfavourable demographics will provide strong headwinds.

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