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ABSTRACT Border cities or regions are in theory more affected by the EU integration process than more central locations as it more drastically influences their transaction costs and market potential. We find a positive empirical effect of EU enlargement as measured by the growth in population share along the integration borders. This effect is active for a limited distance (70 km) and time period (30 years), and is more important for large cities and regions. Despite this positive EU enlargement effect along the border, a location close to a border remains a burden in view of the (larger) negative general border effect.