L’enclave russe de Kaliningrad : spécificité territoriale et intégration à l’économie mondiale
[The Russian Enclave of Kaliningrad: Territorial Specificity and Integration with the World Economy]
As the Soviet Union broke up, Kaliningrad suddenly found itself separated from mainland Russia by new frontiers. Since then, a dramatic trade opening has occurred, and regional trade and production have undergone profound changes. Kaliningrad has experienced a major shift in its economic orientation towards the tertiary sector and a new industrial orientation based on its position as an intermediary in EU–Russian trade. In short, that is what this thesis is about: the present and future economic development of this Russian enclave during its integration into the world economy, its place in the international division of labor and into the Russian–EU economic interface. Exogenous factors acquire an exceptional importance. Foreign trade plays a vital role as Kaliningrad is integrated with the European economy. At the same time, as an integral part of the Russian Federation, the region develops close ties with the economy of the Russian mainland. Exogenous processes, such as the EU enlargement and Russia’s accession to the WTO, intervene as economic shocks with a significant impact on the trade flows. The major phenomenon relative to the economic development of the region is its enclave status. The territorial specificity of the region demands innovative approaches as concerns the regional economic specialization. A successful economic strategy should be able to achieve two results simultaneously. First, it should allow exclave costs to be minimised. Second, a successful strategy should take advantage of available resources. In other words, it should make Kaliningrad’s enclavity a resource in itself (given its proximity to the EU market). The best strategies induce an economic orientation that is well adapted to the specific conditions of the enclave, simultaneously minimising costs and valorising resources. An optimal orientation would be situated within a high development trajectory supplemented by the building-up of new competitive advantages in selected economic sectors. Advancement of the regime of economic integration with the surrounding states, all along with upholding the economic ties with the mainland, is a prerequisite of successful economic development policies.
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