The analysis of Baltic trade statistics and gravity estimates reveal that Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have rapidly integrated into the international division of labour with a distinct EU focus. The Baltic States have taken a road towards the EU common market which pays particular attention to close trade relations with their immediate neighbours in the Baltic Sea Region. The Baltic Sea obviously serves as a major integrating device for these countries. At the same time the Baltic States, although being no longer integrated into the former intra-Soviet division of labour, have not abandoned their contacts to the Soviet successor states altogether. Accordingly, they still have the potential to serve as a gateway from Europe to the CIS markets.
Eastern enlargement Regional integration Gravity model Baltic trade patterns