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The Maastricht Inflation Criterion: What is the Effect of European Union Enlargement?

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  • JOHN LEWIS
  • KARSTEN STAEHR

Abstract

According to the Maastricht Treaty, a country seeking to join the European Monetary Union cannot have an inflation rate in excess of 1.5 per cent plus the average inflation rates in the three 'best performing' EU countries. This inflation reference value is a non-increasing function of the number of EU members. A counterfactual analysis of historical data shows that the effect of enlarging the EU from 15 to 27 countries was sizeable in 2002-04 and again from 2007. Monte Carlo simulations suggest that the enlargement of the EU from 15 to 27 members reduces the inflation reference value by 0.15-0.2 percentage points on average, but there is a considerable probability of a larger reduction at any given moment of time. The treatment of countries with negative inflation rates in the calculation of the reference value has a major impact on the results. Copyright (c) 2010 The Author(s). Journal compilation (c) 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • John Lewis & Karsten Staehr, 2010. "The Maastricht Inflation Criterion: What is the Effect of European Union Enlargement?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48, pages 687-708, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jcmkts:v:48:y:2010:i::p:687-708
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    1. Lars Calmfors & Giancarlo Corsetti & Michael P. Devereux & SeppoHonkapohja & Gilles Saint-Paul & mult. Hans-Werner Sinn & Jan-Egbert Sturm & Xavier Vives, 2007. "EEAG Report on the European Economy 2007," EEAG Report on the European Economy, CESifo Group Munich, vol. 0, pages 1-156, February.
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    3. Lewis, John, 2009. "Hitting and hoping?: Meeting the exchange rate and inflation criteria during a period of nominal convergence," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 508-524, December.
    4. Jonas, Jiri, 2006. "Euro adoption and Maastricht criteria: Rules or discretion?," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 328-345, December.
    5. Peter B. Kenen & Ellen E. Meade, 2003. "EU Accession and the Euro: Close Together or Far Apart?," Policy Briefs PB03-09, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    6. Charles Wyplosz, 2006. "European Monetary Union: the dark sides of a major success," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 21(46), pages 207-261, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. John Lewis, 2011. "How has the Financial Crisis Affected the Eurozone Accession Outlook in Central and Eastern Europe?," Chapters,in: The Economic Crisis and European Integration, chapter 11 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Karsten Staehr, 2016. "Exchange Rate Policies in the Baltic States: From Extreme Inflation to Euro Membership," CESifo Forum, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 16(4), pages 09-18, January.
    3. repec:ces:ifofor:v:12:y:2011:i:02:p:55-62 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:ces:ifofor:v:16:y:2016:i:04:p:09-18 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:rej:journl:v:19:y:2016:i:61:p:245-254 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Zsolt Darvas, 2010. "The case for reforming euro area entry criteria," Society and Economy, Akadémiai Kiadó, Hungary, vol. 32(2), pages 195-219, December.
    7. Riccardo Rovelli, 2011. "Two Suggestions for the Future of the Eurozone," CESifo Forum, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 12(2), pages 55-62, July.
    8. Juan Carlos Cuestas & Luis A. Gil-Alana & Karl Taylor, 2016. "Inflation convergence in Central and Eastern Europe vs. the Eurozone: Non-linearities and long memory," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 63(5), pages 519-538, November.
    9. TRIANDAFIL, Cristina Maria, 2013. "Sustainability of convergence in the context of macro-prudential policies in the European Union," Working Papers of National Institute of Economic Research 130618, National Institute of Economic Research.
    10. Torój, Andrzej & Bednarek, Elżbieta & Bęza-Bojanowska, Joanna & Osińska, Joanna & Waćko, Katarzyna & Witkowski, Dariusz, 2012. "EMU: the (post-)crisis perspective. Literature survey and implications for the euro-candidates," MF Working Papers 12, Ministry of Finance in Poland, revised 06 Mar 2012.

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