While the DPRK (North Korea) is on its way ahead to reform the socialist based economic system, since a few years the Republic of Korea (South Korea) is integrating into East Asian economic structures like ASEAN plus 3. In this way a possible reunification of Korea as well as a single transformation process in North Korea in the near future will be connected closely with the question of economic integration in Northeast Asia. Fortunately, this situation is not singular in economic history but has some models in Europe. For instance, in 1990 Germany reunified during an important deepening phase of the European Union. When Western and Eastern Germany became unified in 1990, Western German political, economic and social institutions were transferred to the former German Democratic Republic (Eastern Germany) by a one-to-one imitation process. The institutional transfer from Western Germany to the Neue Bundesländer (new federal states) meant that Eastern Germans had to accept not only Western German laws, legal norms, organizations as a whole. Additionally, East Germany had to accept the acquis communautaire, the set of rules of the European Union. Considerable changes were achieved and Eastern Germans today enjoy a standard of living much higher than in all other transformation states in Central and Eastern Europe. But also problems of the coincident process of transformation and integration must be mentioned. As will be discussed in this paper lessons to be learned in Korea from the German case are a lot.
Institutional economics transformation economic integration Germany Korea