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The Dynamics of Trade in Central and Eastern European Countries


  • Imre Ferto

    (Hungarian Academy of Sciences)


We describe the evolving pattern of Central European countries’ trade using recently developed empirical procedures based around the classic Balassa index. Despite significant changes in Central European economies during transition to a market economy, the distribution of the indices did not change radically over the 1990s. Our results suggest that the trade pattern converged in Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia, while it polarised in Estonia Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia over the period. For particular product groups, the indices display greater variation. They are stable for product groups with comparative disadvantage, but product groups with weak to strong comparative advantage show significant variation. At the product level different development can be observed in the changes of trade specialization. The comparative advantages are still based largely on primary and natural resource intensive product groups in the Baltic countries, while CEE5 countries show a successful upgrading process in technological and human capital intensive products.

Suggested Citation

  • Imre Ferto, 2007. "The Dynamics of Trade in Central and Eastern European Countries," Managing Global Transitions, University of Primorska, Faculty of Management Koper, vol. 5(1), pages 5-23.
  • Handle: RePEc:mgt:youmgt:v:5:y:2007:i:1:p:005-023

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Grigori Fainštein & Aleksei Netšunajev, 2010. "Foreign Trade Patterns Between Estonia and the EU," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 16(3), pages 311-324, August.
    2. Rodrigo García Arancibia, 2009. "Distribución y Movilidad de la Especialización Argentina en el Comercio Mundial de Agroalimentos: Un Estudio Dinámico," Revista de Economía y Estadística, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas, Instituto de Economía y Finanzas, vol. 0(1), pages 11-45, January.
    3. repec:laf:wpaper:201005 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Imre Fertő & Karoly Attila Soos, 2009. "Duration of trade of former communist countries in the EU market," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(1), pages 31-39.
    5. Raphaël Chiappini, 2014. "Persistence vs. mobility in industrial and technological specialisations: evidence from 11 Euro area countries," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 24(1), pages 159-187, January.
    6. Imre Ferto & Károly Attila Soos, 2008. "Duration of trade of former communist countries at the EU," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0816, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    7. repec:kap:empiri:v:44:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10663-016-9317-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Raphaël Chiappini, 2013. "Persistence vs. mobility in industrial and technological specialisations: Evidence from 11 Euro area countries," Working Papers hal-00854101, HAL.
    9. repec:kap:iaecre:v:16:y:2010:i:3:p:311-324 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Raphaël Chiappini, 2010. "Dynamique des spécialisations et performances commerciales des pays d'Europe centrale et orientale (PECO)," Working Papers hal-00637591, HAL.

    More about this item


    international trade; revealed comparative advantage; Central Europe;

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • E23 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Production


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