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A sequential approach to regional integration: The European Union and Central and Eastern Europe


  • Martin, Philippe


This paper develops a theory of optimal sequencing of regional integration and applies it to the specific question of Central and East European countries (CEECs) and the EU. We show that the timing of transition and integration has implications for the long-term trade structure of Europe. In this model the motivation to integrate the CEECs comes from harmonization of policies to attract industries. Without integration, European countries will try inefficiently to protect their industries. Because of the transfers implied by the CAP and the Structural Policies, the EU will delay enlargement until the CEECs have sufficiently converged. CEECs might then prefer to stay outside the EU and attract industries by offering them more generous protection than the EU. Such timing may be inefficient ex ante for all countries because it may prevent full European integration in the long run, inducing firms to relocate outside of the EU and governments in the EU and the CEECs to protect industry. During the transition, all countries benefit from regional integration among the CEECs.
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Suggested Citation

  • Martin, Philippe, 1996. "A sequential approach to regional integration: The European Union and Central and Eastern Europe," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 581-598, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:poleco:v:12:y:1996:i:4:p:581-598

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Anderson, Kym & Tyers, Rodney, 1993. "Implications of EC Expansion for European Agricultural Policies, Trade and Welfare," CEPR Discussion Papers 829, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Philippe Martin & Gianmarco Ottaviano, 1995. "The Geography of Multi-Speed Europe," Sciences Po publications DP1292, Sciences Po.
    3. Hoekman, Bernard & Mavroidis, Petros C, 1994. "Linking Competition and Trade Policies in Central and East European Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 1009, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Hoekman, Bernard M. & Mavroidis, Petros C. & DEC, 1994. "Linking competition and trade policies in Central and Eastern European countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1346, The World Bank.
    5. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/9347 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Martin, Philippe, 1995. "Free-riding, convergence and two-speed monetary unification in Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 1345-1364, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Philippe Martin & Claude Jessua, 1996. "L'importance des exclus de l'intégration monétaire en Europe," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, vol. 47(3), pages 807-817.
    2. Jean Pisani-Ferry, 1995. "L'Europe à géométrie variable, une analyse économique," Working Papers 1995-04, CEPII research center.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration


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