38th Congress of the European Regional Science Association: "Europe Quo Vadis? - Regional Questions at the Turn of the Century", 28 August - 1 September 1998, Vienna, Austria
The Russian economic space has been transformed during the reforms of 1992-1997. The principal force of this transformation is the new price system, the transition from the old "low-level"system towards the new "high-level" one. The old system was crystallized in the 1930s and was characterized by the low level of prices on labour, goods and services (as well as by their permanent shortage and low quality. The main spatial consequences of this transformation are: 1) The closing of the local and regional markets as a result of a many thousands times growth of energy prices and transportation costs. 2) A disintegration of the national economic space and a reorientation of the regional trade flows, especially in the distant Russian regions. 3) A deep decline of the Northern regions. 4) A high growth of the new activities (finance, commerce. real estate) in the city of Moscow and in some other macroregional centres. 5) A strong economic differentiation between Russian regions that is caused by the industrial structure of the regional economy (the most favourable branches are those that have an export orientation - oil and gas extraction, metallurgy, some sub-branches of chemical industry).