Industrial Restructuring in European Transition Economies: Regulatory Framework and the Role of Innovation

Industrial Restructuring in European Transition Economies: Regulatory Framework and the Role of Innovation

Industrial Restructuring in European Transition Economies: Regulatory Framework and the Role of Innovation

Industrial Restructuring in European Transition Economies: Regulatory Framework and the Role of Innovation

Synopsis

The present report contains an overview and the main findings of the UNECE Workshop on “Policy and Regulatory Options for Promoting Industrial Restructuring in ECE Region” and the Conference on “Innovation as a Vehicle for Industrial Restructuring”, held on 23 and 24 April 2003 in Geneva, Switzerland.

Excerpt

Recently, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe has organized a number of events aimed at gaining a better understanding of industrial restructuring in transition countries and developing recommendations relating to the government policy measures facilitating this process. The major issues of industrial restructuring in transition economies had been discussed at the Round Table organized by UNECE in February 2002, which considered the general problems of industrial restructuring (ECE/TRADE/291).

In April 2003, experts from various European countries continued this discussion, focusing more specifically on the role of government regulations and institutions conducive to industrial restructuring, and on the impact of new technologies and innovation in this process.

The Workshop on “Policy and Regulatory Options for Promoting Industrial Restructuring in ECE Region” focused mostly on short- and long-run external conditions conducive to industrial restructuring. This external environment is created by the existing institutions, as well as by State laws and regulations. The Conference on “Innovation as a Vehicle for Industrial Restructuring”, which followed, discussed the opportunities for restructuring created by the technological change in its broad sense, including its structural (inter-sectoral) and micro-economic (intra-sectoral) aspects. The participants in these events addressed problems related to the institutional basis for industrial restructuring (mechanisms for protecting property rights, the role of privatization and corporate governance), government policy aimed at imposing hard budget constraints on enterprises and favouring competition, restructuring in the public sector and the role of SMEs, and innovation policy and measures to support innovation at the company level. The participants shared their views on the regulatory framework for restructuring individual industries (e.g. steel and chemicals) and the role of Governments in raising the efficiency of restructuring in different transition countries. The challenges of globalization and European integration for transition countries were also discussed . . .

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