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Is it really different? Patterns of regionalization in the post-Soviet Central Asia

  • Libman, Alexander
  • Vinokurov, Evgeny

While the regional economic integration in the former Soviet Union turns out to be highly inefficient, there appears to be a stronger interest to the regionalism in smaller groups of more homogenous and geographically connected countries of the region, specifically, Central Asia. This paper attempts to understand whether the preconditions for the regional integration in Central Asia are indeed better than in the CIS in general. Using a new dataset of the System of Indicators of Eurasian Integration of the Eurasian Development Bank, it finds that although the economic links between the Central Asian countries are more pronounced than between that of the CIS in several key areas, this advantage has been disappearing fast over the last decade. In addition, the trend of economic integration of Central Asia seems to strongly correlate with that of the CIS in general, while Russia persists as the dominant gravitation pole for all of Central Asia. Currently Central Asia should be treated as a sub-region of the post-Soviet world rather than a definite integration region. On the other hand, however, we find that Kazakhstan emerges as a new center for regional integration, which can bear some potential for regionalism in Central Asia.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 21062.

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Date of creation: Feb 2010
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:21062
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  1. O Rourke, Kevin H. & Williamson, Jeffrey G., 2002. "When did globalisation begin?," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 23-50, April.
  2. Libman, Alexander & Vinokurov, Evgeny, 2010. "Holding together regionalism and the interaction of functional bureaucracies," MPRA Paper 23217, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Grafe, Clemens & Raiser, Martin & Sakatsume, Toshiaki, 2008. "Beyond borders--Reconsidering regional trade in Central Asia," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 453-466, September.
  4. Herrmann-Pillath, Carsten, 2006. "Endogenous regionalism," Journal of Institutional Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(03), pages 297-318, December.
  5. Michalopoulos, Constantine & Tarr, David, 1997. "The economics of customs unions in the Commonwealth of Independent States," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1786, The World Bank.
  6. Lorenz, Detlef, 1992. "Economic Geography and the Political Economy of Regionalization: The Example of Western Europe," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 84-87, May.
  7. Vinokurov, Evgeny, 2010. "The System of Indicators of Eurasian Integration," MPRA Paper 22227, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Ian Babetskii & Oxana Babetskaia-Kukharchuk & Martin Raiser, 2003. "Transition and international integration in eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union," Working Papers 83, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Office of the Chief Economist.
  9. Lücke, Matthias & Rothert, Jacek, 2006. "Central Asia's comparative advantage in international trade," Kiel Economic Policy Papers 6, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  10. David Jay Green, 2001. "Regional co-operation policies in Central Asia," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(8), pages 1151-1164.
  11. Gaël Raballand & Agnès Andrésy, 2007. "Why should trade between Central Asia and China continue to expand?," Asia Europe Journal, Springer, vol. 5(2), pages 235-252, June.
  12. Vinokurov, Evgeny, 2009. "The CIS Common Electric Power Market," MPRA Paper 20910, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Lev Freinkman & Evgeny Polyakov & Carolina Revenco, 2004. "Trade Performance and Regional Integration of the CIS Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 14933.
  14. Little, Peter, 2005. "Unofficial Trade When States are Weak: The Case of Cross-Border Commerce in the Horn of Africa," Working Paper Series RP2005/13, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
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