Countries whose institutions promote economic freedom enjoy higher investment rates, more rapid economic growth, higher income levels, and a more rapid reduction in poverty rates. Open markets allow nations to specialize in the production of goods that they have a comparative advantage in, resulting in welfare gains for all involved parties. Only if property rights are secured, countries can attract foreign investment they need to diversify and develop their economies. All in all, the preservation and expansion of the liberal trade regime is necessary to ensure rising living standards in all parts of the world. Hence, monitoring the development of economic institutions and conditions worldwide is of vital importance.
The Economic Freedom of the World Report, annually published by the Fraser Institute and its partners, compiles data from over 150 countries and enjoys worldwide reputation. The Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom invites you to the launch of this year’s edition, which will take place in Brussels for the very first time. Is the world moving towards free trade or protectionism? How can property rights be secured in times of political unrest in large parts of the world? What are the repercussions of the financial crisis 2007/2008? How is the EU member states’ performance evaluated? Does the European Union rather facilitate or inhibit liberalization and economic freedom? Join us for a lively discussion of the findings.
Welcome and Keynote
Olli Rehn, MEP
Vice President of the European Parliament and former European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro
Dr. Robert Lawson
Professor of economics at Cox School of Business and Co-author of the Economic Freedom of the World Report
Dr. James Gwartney
Professor of economics and Political Science at Florida State University and Co-author of the Economic Freedom of the World Report
Dr. Michael Walker
Founder of the Fraser Institute
Andrei Illarionov (tbc)
Senior fellow at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity and former chief economic adviser of Russian President Vladimir Putin
EU Correspondent, WirtschaftsWoche
Hans H. Stein
Director of the International Political Dialogue European Institutions and North America at the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom
The Launch of the Economic Freedom of the World Report 2014 is the culmination of a three-day conference. The panels on Monday are open to the public.
09.00 – 11.00 Does the EU enhance Economic Freedom in Europe?
Would a new structure serve better? What overall economic stance should the EU adopt? What is the future of the EU considering discontent in many nations, especially Britain?
Pierre Bessard “Tax Competition and the Swiss-EU clash”
Steffen Hentrich “Economic Freedom in the European Union – a brief country-by-country overview”
Andrew Young“Does the European Union promote Convergence in Economic Freedom?”
11.30 – 14.30Is the Euro crisis over?
What are the continuing dangers? What more needs to be done? Have the needed structural reforms in crisis (or potential crisis) nations been undertaken?
Annette Godart-van der Kroon “Europe after the Crisis, its Regulations, its Leaders, its Citizens”
Emmanuel Martin “Is the EU crisis behind us? Maybe not…”
Mike Walker“Some Observations on Economic Developments in the European Union
15.00 – 17.00 How should Europe deal with Russia?
Can Europe successfully pressure Russia – is Russia vulnerable? Can Europe survive economically without Russian energy? What are the larger economic consequences of a Russia-EU split? What are the energy alternatives to Russia?
Andrew Kondratowicz “Institutional difference between countries – causes and consequences. The case of the EU, Russia and Ukraine”
Andrei Illarionov, Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity and former Chief Economic Advisor of Russian President Vladimir Putin (tbc)
If interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to register.