Date: Tue, 12 May 2009
From: Vlad Ivanenko <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: JRL 88-23 Russia's trade in Transcaucasia and Central Asia
As a rejoinder to the IMF statement "Russia is no longer a leading trade partner in Transcaucasia and Central Asia" made by Ratna Sahay, deputy director of the IMF Middle East and Central Asia Department; I like to add that available trade data suggests otherwise. In fact, the UNSD database puts Russia as a leading source of import for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. On the direction of export, Russia is the largest partner for Armenia and Kyrgyzstan with other two countries - Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan - directing its export to Italy (crude oil). Among the countries covered in the database, only Georgia has a country other than Russia as its leading partner (Turkey).
While the UNSD does not get up-to-date data from other countries of the region (Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan), other sources suggests that Russia is their leading partner in all respects except for the case of export from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, for which Ukraine claims to be the largest importer (natural gas).
trade and energy analyst, Ottawa