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Synopsis

This book provides an overview of the evolution of distortions to agricultural incentives caused by price and trade policies in the economies of Eastern Europe and Central Asia (ECA) that are transitioning away from central planning. It includes country and sub-regional studies of the ten transition economies of Central and Eastern Europe that joined the European Union in 2004 or 2007, of seven other large member countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and of Turkey. Sectoral, trade and exchange rate policies in this region have been changed hugely since the dissolving of the Soviet Union in 1991, but much remains to be done to reduce trade barriers, and with it the anti-export bias in the policy regime of especially those countries exporting primary products. To progress reform - and to see how recent policies line up with those of the European Union (EU) - requires better information on the extent of progress during the past fifteen years and of current policy influences on incentives within and between sectors. Prior to their transition to market economies, policies in ECA countries greatly distorted producer and consumer incentives, especially for agricultural products. While those distortions have been reduced substantially in several countries, large variations remain - and distortions appear to be growing again in some of the countries. This book provides the necessary stocktake required for these countries- policymakers to be able to move reforms forward in an informed way.

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