“Export influencing factors in the Iberian, Baltic and Visegrád regions”, Andrea Éltető, Norbert Szijártó (IWE, Hungary)

The global financial crisis and the euro crisis had severe negative impacts on the European economy and highlighted the problems of increasing economic heterogeneity among the member states of the European Union. The scope of this study is to scrutiny three different peripheral regions of the European Union – the Iberian, the Baltic and the Visegrád countries. The Iberian, Baltic countries and Slovakia had limited adjustment possibilities (internal devaluation and fiscal austerity), since these member states have been applying fixed exchange rate regimes, (now all countries are members of the Eurozone). In the case of the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, the use of nominal depreciation is possible to restore competitiveness and enhance economic growth. The consequences are striking, Iberian countries suffered from a protracted crisis, Baltic countries endured a large decline in economic activity and a strong recovery, while the Visegrád countries have been experiencing a robust economic growth and catchingup process since the crisis. Based on the Varieties of Capitalism framework, we analyse the macroeconomic features of these regions. Although the literature separates the three regions on the ground of deep institutional factors and complementarities, macroeconomic indicators behaved similarly. The pre-crisis period had been characterized by large current-account balances due to capital and product inflow, which was corrected during the post-crisis period. Albeit, differences can also be observed in diverging post-crisis labour market developments.

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