The Baltic Region

2016 Issue №3

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The Role of Tourism in the Development of Russia’s Northwestern Border Regions



This article examines the development of tourism and recreation in the border regions of Russia’s North-West as a new promising area of regional growth. The unique natural, historical, and cultural resources, nature, and a favourable economic and geographical position are basic prerequisites for the development of tourism in the region. Historically, the barriers of state borders hampered the development of tourism; and tourism was seen as an activity bringing no economic benefits to regions since most Soviet citizens travelled as beneficiaries of social programmes. This article aims to research prospects of tourism and recreation development of Russia’s northwestern border regions. The author analyses statistical and analytical data and does the content analysis of regional strategies for tourism and socioeconomic development. A number of statistical methods, namely, the regression and the time series ones are used to give a deeper insight into the problem. The article explores the practices of tourism and recreation development in a historical perspective and examines the effect of barrier and contact functions of state borders on tourism. Particular attention is paid to tourism development in the border regions of Russia’s North-West. The author evaluates the development of tourism and recreation in the border regions of northwestern Russia at the beginning of the 21st century. The article identifies factors hindering tourism development and suggests measures to stimulate tourism as a regional economic activity.


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