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Never too late to get together again : turning the Czech and Slovak Customs Union into a stepping stone to EU integration., Volume 1
Author:Kaminski, Bartlomiej; Smarzynska, Beata; Country:Slovak Republic; Czech Republic;
Date Stored:2003/02/15Document Date:2003/01/31
Document Type:Policy Research Working PaperSubTopics:Common Carriers Industry; Environmental Economics & Policies; Economic Theory & Research; Agribusiness & Markets; Trade Policy; Free Trade; Trade and Regional Integration
Language:EnglishRegion:Europe and Central Asia
Report Number:WPS2954Sub Sectors:General industry and trade sector
Collection Title:Policy, Research working paper series ; no WPS 2954Volume No:1

Summary: The Czech and Slovak Customs Union (CSCU), which came into effect in January 1993, differs from regular regional trading arrangements as its goal was to minimize the economic cost of a decline in economic ties between its members rather than to set in motion the mechanism of integration. The creation of the CSCU ensured a smooth and conflict-free break up of Czechoslovakia and resulted in divergence in regulatory regimes of the two republics. This study argues that the process of mutual adjustment triggered by the emergence of national borders is over and that integration within the CSCU, similar in depth and scope to that existing within the European Union (EU), would be a desirable policy objective. By deepening integration, both the Czech and Slovak Republics would be better prepared to handle challenges associated with the EU accession. Such a regulatory realignment would also lower border costs and behind-the-border barriers to trade and result in a more attractive investment environment in both countries.

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