Geo-economics and Geopolitics in Europe from the Aspect of a Centre-Periphery Divide

The paper gives a comprehensive geo-economic analysis of Europe, providing a new, distance-based definition of core (360 km), centre (720 km), semi-periphery (1440 km) and periphery (over 1440 km), which is also relevant for other, non-European economies. The main finding of the paper is that transportation costs per unit are much higher for peripheral economies than central ones which might question the rationale behind a close economic integration for peripheral countries with the centre when shipping low value-added exports. However, integration with the centre is still beneficial for semi-peripheral producers. The paper also compares the Lower Rhine Centre with two other historical centres, notably Moscow and Istanbul, concluding that the latter two are economically significantly weaker and thus cannot be an alternative integration vector for semi-periphery or periphery with high value-added exports. The findings of the paper would favour a significant reform of the European Monetary Union, arguing for a common currency of central countries (including UK, Denmark and Switzerland) while reintroducing national currencies at the periphery. However, political realities do not match usually geo-economic rationale as close neighbours who are destined for close economic cooperation often have troubled historical ties.Tanulmány letöltése