Perspectives for Economic Cooperation Between Russia and the Countries of Central and Eastern Europe in the Light of the Enlargement of the European Union
This paper argues that Eastern enlargement of the European Union, which is to be accomplished de jure as of May 1, 2004, will not bring about any further significant changes in trade and economic cooperation between Russia and the former socialist countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). Most of the really important changes related to the European integration and re-orientation have already occurred in the period following 1989, and there is little left for the future. On the other hand, economic and political stabilization in the CEEs - of which full membership in the EU should be an important phase - may contribute to better conditions (than in the turbulent transition period) for the development of relations with Russia (and other CIS countries outside the scope of the paper) as well.
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