A trio of European economists have just published a meta-analysis on the effects of economic freedom (EF) on economic growth. After many pages, here is their bottom-line conclusion:
(p. 182) Most studies reviewed in this paper have serious drawbacks, including lacking senstitivity analysis and poor specifications of the growth model used. However, studies that have applied some kind of sensitivity analysis and sensible specfications generally find support for a positive relationship between changes in EF and growth. This suggests that liberalization will indeed boost economic growth.
For the full article, see:
De Haan, Jakob, Susanna Lundström, and Jan-Egbert Sturm. “Market-Oriented Institutions and Policies and Economic Growth: A Critical Survey.” Journal of Economic Surveys 20, no. 2 (2006): 157-91.