Economic cooperation between post-Soviet countries slowed down in last 10 years

January 29. Interfax. Almaty

Economic cooperation between post-Soviet countries slowed down in last 10 yearsEurasian Development Bank (EDB) summed up the results of the first annual research dedicated to dynamics of integration processes in the post-Soviet space.

Vladimir Yasinsky, EDB’s director of analytical work, presented the report to journalists in Almaty on Thursday. He explained that the bank’s analytics have devised a system of indicators that allows to estimate the pace and quality of interstate cooperation in the region by means of statistics.

“I will note that the system of indicators is a “meter”, a measuring instrument. It is objective, because it is based on statistics,” said Yevgeny Vinokurov, Head of EDB’s department of economic analysis and consulting.

The study covers the period between 1999 and 2008. According to the results the indicator of integration signifies the decrease of economic cooperation between the post-soviet countries in the 2000’s. While the level of labor and education integration increased (over 1.9 million workers from Kyrgyzstan moved to Kazakhstan and 5.5 thousand students from Russia and Uzbekistan studied in Kazakh universities in 2008 and 23.6 thousand Kazakh students received education in the CIS) the level of trade, energy and agricultural cooperation declined.

“Integration processes in the electricity sector decreased due to the crisis – energy flows between the countries are 4 times lower then in the 80s,” said Vinokurov.

According to the study Russia is the biggest “integration center” in the post-soviet space but not the only one any more. Analytics note that Kazakhstan is rapidly turning into the second regional center for trade flows and labor migration. Tadzhikistan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan, who are more integrated with other CIS states, strive to cooperate with these centers.

EDB is an international financial organization established by Russia and Kazakhstan in January 2006 to support the economies of the countries, their steady economic growth and expansion of trading and economic relations. The registered capital of EDB is $1.5 billion and $1 billion was contributed by Russia and $500 million by Kazakhstan.