Title: Message

The EU's New Borderlands

Judy Batt
Centre for European Reform
An intriguing study of what the new EU border will mean for the countries left just outside it. Fears of an influx of migrants from Romania, Ukraine and Belarus mean that strict policing of the new border was a condition of EU entry for Poland, Hungary and the other countries on the new edge of Europe. But what effect will that have on the people who have grown used to crossing it?

Batt discusses some of the informal markets which have sprung up in the former eastern bloc and explains the mutual benefits they bring. Just under a quarter of a million people earn a living from the "bazaar trade" across the Polish-Ukrainian border; many Polish small businesses depend on cross-border custom. That will come to an end when the new and heavily policed EU border is established in May 2004.

She also identifies several distinctive central European regions - Banat in south-west Romania, Transcarpathia, Vojvodina in northern Serbia - which will be split in two by the EU border and the accompanying visa rules. It's a practical pamphlet, with a range of suggestions for the EU.


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