Edited by Adriaan Dierx, Fabienne Ilzkovitz and Khalid Sekkat
Chapter 1: Product market integration in the EU: an overview
1. Product market integration in the EU: an overview Adriaan Dierx, Fabienne Ilzkovitz and Khalid Sekkat The ten-year anniversary of the Single Market Programme (SMP) offers an excellent opportunity to look back and examine how economic integration has affected product market functioning in the European Union (EU). Although markets for goods and services have been inﬂuenced by other developments (for example, globalisation and Economic and Monetary Union (EMU)), the SMP remains an important driver of change in EU product markets. EMU, which should be seen as a subsequent stage in the continuing process of European integration, complements the SMP by facilitating cross-border transactions and making markets more transparent. The reduction in cross-border transaction costs and the elimination of exchange rate risk within the euro area are expected to stimulate trade and foreign investment. Moreover, the increased clarity of differences in price levels between Member States should encourage arbitrage and contribute to price convergence. This volume provides an in-depth analysis of the consequences of the on-going process of European market integration. It covers microeconomic aspects such as the level of competition, the strategic behaviour of ﬁrms and the structure and location of European industry as well as macroeconomic ones such as the impact of product market integration on growth and employment and on the European Union’s exposure to asymmetric shocks. The volume contains eight chapters. This opening chapter presents the analytical framework, which links together the different chapters of this book and gives an overview of its contents. The four...
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