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Evolution of the Spatial Distribution of Economic Activities in Russia

The main sources of the article are the idea of multiplicity of spatial equilibria and the hypothesis of agglomeration economies. Data was analyzed with indices of spatial concentration and economic assessments. This paper shows that the evolution of the spatial distribution of economic activities in Russia unfolds in parallel with its concentration. We are observing how spatial development model changes to the one which has higher concentration of economic activities and, consequently, higher level of interregional inhomogeneity. There is no outstanding redistribution of production factors and flow of output from the east to the west of Russia. We draw a conclusion that Russian regional policy aimed at supporting ‘points of growth’ and ‘territories of rapid development’ should be seen as ineffective for the moment. Due to agglomeration mechanisms, growing territories are able to improve their dynamics of development independently, without government support. Currently, agglomeration process takes place the length and breadth of Russia, and it is only slightly slower in the eastern part. Under the conditions where interregional competition dominates cooperation, spatial externalities appear to be negative, and government regulation intended to support dynamic economies may lead to further differentiation. Regional policy designed to narrow gaps among regions is a more reasonable solution, which is also supported by restrictions caused by the federal form of government and threat of separatism

Kolomak Ie. A.

Keywords: economic activity spatial model empirical estimations empirical estimation regional policy agglomeration processes

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