Post-Communist Transition

Some Lessons

By Leszek Balcerowicz
December 2002
Institute of Economic Affairs
ISBN: 0-255-36533-0
63 pages, 5 1/8" x 7 3/4"
$18.50 Paper Original

The post-communist transition in Europe and the former Soviet Union is one of the most important transformations in modern history. The changes involved were exceptionally large, and it was not only political and economic systems that were affected: there were changes in social structures, new territorial boundaries in some cases had to be constructed. Moreover, market-oriented reforms were introduced under democratic regimes. The author discusses the varying outcomes of transitions in different countries, showing that it was policies more than initial conditions that produced the differences. He argues that the larger the scope of market-oriented reforms, the better the performance in terms of growth, low inflation and environmental improvement. The presence of competent and determined reformers has also been a crucial factor in successful transformations.

Thirty-First Wincott Lecture

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