Regional overview: Eurasia
Eurasia is the region that has improved the least in the overall ETI, with a deterioration of performance in both market access and transport services. Georgia further consolidates its leadership in the region, improving its score and climbing five ranks to 41st, while the rest of region slips. The Caucasian country leads the group in all ETI pillars with the exception of Transport services (led by Kazakhstan, at 68th globally), Transport infrastructure and ICT adoption, both led by the Russian Federation (which also presents the worst access to foreign market and border administration). Armenia’s score has dropped two decimals, dragging down the country 14 positions to 68th, while the new-entry Tajikistan (not covered in 2014) trails the rest of region at 114th, preceded by the Kyrgyz Republic (113th, down 15) and the Russian Federation, at a disappointing 111th (down six).
Focus on the Russian Federation
The Russian Federation slips six positions to 111th and remains among the large emerging economies that are lagging behind when it comes to fully integrating into the world trade system. The further roll-out of the country’s commitments under its WTO accession has improved its domestic market access, thanks to a decrease of applied tariff rate from 9.5 to 5.8 percent, but from a global perspective its level of openness remains poor (112th), with only 39.7 percent of goods entering the market free of duty (102nd) and a fairly complex tariff structure (105th, down one). In addition, the Russian Federation has further lost access to foreign markets, as its average faced tariff has increased (4.9 percent, 133rd) and margin of preference eroded (120th, down 33). Yet improving market access alone will not fix the country’s problems in integrating into world trade. Trade facilitation will also need to improve: importing 15 tons of automotive components currently costs more than US$ 1,200 for border and documentary compliance, with the Russian clearance procedures rated 124th in the world. In spite of good infrastructure (37th), transport services are inefficient (82nd), making shipments difficult and unaffordable (109th). Finally, the private sector suffers from uncertain protection of property rights (119th) and difficult access to finance (112nd), increasing the difficulties of operating in the local business environment (113th).