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Does ‘New Regionalism Theory’ Explain the Complementary Role of Foreign Direct Investment and Trade Activity in the Central and Eastern European Region? The Case of Bulgaria


  • Aristidis Bitzenis
  • Andreas Andronikidis
  • Pyrros Papadimitriou


In this paper we attempt to contribute to the ongoing debate about new and old regionalism. First, we focus on the presentation of regional initiatives in the Central & East European (CEE) region and on specific motives behind Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and trade expansion in CEE countries. Then, through empirical research and the analysis of regional initiatives we found that FDI and trade are complementary to each other, while FDI is a characteristic of new regionalism signifying deeper integration. On the other hand, geographical proximity still plays an important role in trade and investment suggesting that elements from both old and new regionalism are apparent in the CEE region. Only a small number of advanced countries participate in a few regional initiatives. However, membership in regional initiatives - if isolated - does not directly and/or simultaneously imply deep integration (new regionalism).

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  • Aristidis Bitzenis & Andreas Andronikidis & Pyrros Papadimitriou, 2013. "Does ‘New Regionalism Theory’ Explain the Complementary Role of Foreign Direct Investment and Trade Activity in the Central and Eastern European Region? The Case of Bulgaria," Forum for Social Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(2-3), pages 257-280.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:fosoec:v:42:y:2013:i:2-3:p:257-280
    DOI: 10.1007/s12143-011-9093-x

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