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Article Restricted

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European Economic review

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Between 1990 and 1996, competition laws have been adopted in 22 of the 26 transition economies of eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Yet there is very little systematic evidence about implementation experience, and none regarding its impact on intensity of economy-wide competition. The novelty of this paper is twofold. First, it defines a range of competition policy implementation criteria relevant for transition and developing economies along the three main dimensions of enforcement, competition advocacy and institutional effectiveness. These classification criteria go significantly beyond the traditional emphasis on abuse of dominance, agreement and merger cases. Second, it provides an assessment of the effectiveness of competition policy implementation across 18 countries along these criteria, based on data from each country's competition authorities and supplemented with assessments by legal practitioners. The relationship between competition policy and intensity of competition is explored, with the latter captured by a measure of economy-wide enterprise mobility that reflects selection effects. We find a robust positive relationship between effective competition policy implementation and expansion of more efficient private firms.