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Keywords:

  • East Germany;
  • West Germany;
  • Berlin Wall;
  • reunification;
  • transition;
  • privatisation;
  • convergence;
  • property-owing democracy;
  • Korea

Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, public opinion in East Germany is dominated by a deep hostility towards free markets and an uncritical attitude towards state intervention. This article argues that the mistakes that have been made in the economic transformation of East Germany continue to have an effect to this day. Supporters of the free economy failed to explain why the grievances people faced were not caused by allegedly ‘unbridled’ markets, but by false policies. Hopefully, a future reunified Korea will avoid repeating these mistakes.