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Economic Relations Between Western Europe And Russia, 1600–1800

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Chapter Summary

The economic relations between Western Europe and Russia in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries consisted mainly of trade. Dependable figures are hard to come by, but it seems that throughout the rest of the eighteenth century approximately half of Russia's trade with Western Europe went via St. Petersburg, about 40% via other Russian Baltic ports mainly Riga, Reval, and Narva and perhaps 10% via Arkhangelsk. The relatively modest position of the Dutch in the Russian market in the eighteenth century as compared to the situation in the seventeenth century was part of the relative decline of Dutch commerce in the decades around 1700. It is clear that the Russian market for imported commodities was concentrated in the upper strata of society: the Imperial court, the government, the nobility, the church, and the entrepreneurial elite. For a long time, Russian law had offered little legal security and Russian merchants lacked sufficient education.

Keywords: Dutch commerce; economic relations; Russia's trade; Russian market; St. Petersburg; western Europe



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