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Mr. Clinton R. Shiells, Mr. John R Dodsworth, and Mr. Paul Henri Mathieu
This paper explores from a regional perspective the distorted nature of trade in energy products within the CIS countries. The persistence of pricing distortions, barter arrangements, and discriminatory access to pipelines, as well as failure to honor contracts, has disrupted and distorted energy exports to non-CIS countries, undermined energy sector reforms, and distorted investment decisions. The paper focuses on cross-border issues as an integral component of the wider problem of inefficient energy use within the CIS. Several policy recommendations are proposed, including measures to foster greater competition, reduce state involvement, and promote regional cooperation.
Mr. Oleh Havrylyshyn and Mr. Hassan Al-Atrash
This paper looks at the progress in transition and the geographic diversification of trade, focusing on two issues--the degree of trade openness and trade integration--for a sample of countries in transition. It concludes that about half of the group of countries sampled are becoming as open as similar market economies, but that many others remain relatively closed. Geographic diversification (to the European Union) is found to be greater the closer is geographic proximity and the more advanced the country is with reforms. The analysis is then extended, in an illustrative way, to show how much larger would be the share of exports to the EU if structural reforms were more ambitious.
Mr. Robert L. Sharer
This paper analyzes the role of regional arrangements in trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) performance in the Baltics. While progress with transition is a key determinant of trade and FDI performance, regional arrangements with Western Europe have helped develop trade and transfer of technology, but have not yet led to export-related foreign direct investment toward the European Union. The main reasons for this are policy uncertainties, need for more progress with transition, and restrictions in the trade agreements, especially on the European Union side. Intra-Baltic integration has not yet led to substantial trade and FDI growth between the Baltics.