The New Geography of Eastern European Trade
This paper estimates the cost of the disintegration of the former Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA). It asks whether the reorientation of trade flows towards Western markets has been large enough to compensate for the huge destruction of trade flows between former CMEA countries. Given the severe recession and the reduction in export and import capacities, the answer to this question is not obvious. Furthermore, particular features of CMEA functioning imply that the decrease in regional trade flows is not necessarily welfare-increasing. Two gravity equations are estimated on a panel of 14 years to give a picture of CMEA trade before and after the disintegration. Trade reorientation from 1990 onwards and the penetration of foreign markets are assessed, and two conclusions emerge. First, despite the collapse of eastern trade, the increasing volume of trade flows with the West has not been large enough to compensate for the loss of regional markets. This is increasing, however, thanks to commercial policies which favour trade cooperation and liberalization. The contrast here between the 1990s and the 1920s, when a similar episode – the disintegration of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire – occurred, is striking. The second conclusion stresses the weakness of the regional market in the East, and the perverse effect of hub and spoke bilateralism, reinforced by the Europe Agreements. Similar regional eastern agreements have been signed as a result. They aim to limit the diverting effect of hub and spoke trade and to exploit the important potential seen to lie in the further development of eastern trade.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
|Date of creation:||Mar 1997|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ.|
Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820
|Order Information:|| Email: |
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1580. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.