DP3318 | The CEEC10's Real Convergence Prospects

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The Central and Eastern European countries' prospects of becoming EU members depend heavily on, among other things, their per capita GDP levels. It is shown that the neoclassical growth model does not yet adequately describe the growth process in these countries. This makes a direct growth accounting exercise to assess these countries' growth prospects infeasible. Therefore an indirect approach is taken, which maps the Western European growth experience in 10 Central and Eastern European countries (CEEC10). This indirect approach is used to project growth rates of the CEEC10 and the time required to close or narrow the income gaps to the European Union (EU). The sensitivity of the results is analysed by presenting a wide variety of economically meaningful scenarios. Finally, possible beneficial effects of EU membership or pre-accession aids are studied. The effects of these measures on the reduction of the times to converge are computed.