Competitiveness of Mutual Agrarian Foreign Trade of the Post-Soviet Countries

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Technická Univerzita v Liberci
Technical university of Liberec, Czech Republic
The paper is an analysis of foreign trade of the post-Soviet countries conducted for years 2000 and 2015. The aims of the research were thus twofold: to examine the bilateral trade scheme for the selected countries and to attempt to explore relations between competitiveness and thus the position of the agricultural commodity aggregates. The UN COMTRADE database was used. In the monitored countries, there is continuous growth of the commodity aggregate 0 – Food and live animals, which is strongly influenced by the commodity sub-aggregates 02 – Dairy products and bird eggs, S3-04 – Cereals and cereal preparations. The first phase entailed calculations of individual indicators of mutual trade (RCA, LFI, GLI and coverage of import). Subsequently, the indicators were used as input variables for further analyses. Using RCA and LFI indexes, the commodity aggregates were classified into 4 quadrants according to their position within the comparative advantage and competitiveness.
Using a cluster analysis (based on Euclidian distance and Ward’s method), individual commodity aggregates for the monitored countries were divided into groups based on the values of GLI, LFI and coverage of import. The groups were subsequently characterized for individual countries. Based on the conducted analyses, it can be stated that hypothesis 0 about the non-existence of significant changes within the group structure does not reflect the reality. Between 2000 and 2015, substantial changes occurred in terms of dividing the commodity aggregates into groups based on their common characteristics with regard to foreign trade.
In addition, the diversity within foreign trade decreased between 2000 and 2015, and more commodity aggregates attain values around or below the average of a given aggregate. When assessing the intra-industry trade, it can be stated that some commodity aggregates can be regarded as important only with regard to Azerbaijan, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine. In these countries, this phenomenon is most frequently evident in the commodity aggregates Beverages or Vegetables and fruit.
Post-Soviet countries, cluster analysis, LFI, RCA, GLI, commodity group