Market liberalisation and sustainability in transition: Turning points and trends in Central and Eastern Europe

  • Archibald S
  • Banu L
  • Bochniarz Z
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This contribution assesses the impact of market liberalisation on the sustainability of the transformation in ten Central and East European countries (CEE10). Although a significant body of literature assesses economic and social consequences of the transformation, there are limited numbers of investigations that examine the impact of liberalisation on the environment. For CEE countries, assessing environmental effects of structural change in the economy, rising personal consumption, rapid transition to market-oriented economics, and dramatically increased liberalisation is critical. Equally important is assessing the outcomes of environmental and other policy and institutional reforms. To assess these changes, a set of sustainability indicators is used to estimate an environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) and sustainability trends. The EKC concept assumes that environmental pressure rises initially with an increase in income but declines beyond some estimated level or 'turning point'. The question is how market liberalisation has affected this observed relationship. This study demonstrates the progress of the CEE10, relative to other CEE and new independent states (NIS), and how much progress is still needed to secure more sustainable development.

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  • Sandra O. Archibald

  • Luana E. Banu

  • Zbigniew Bochniarz

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