Journal 2020#1

The Change of Foreign Trade Structure of African Countries in the Context of Increasing Regionalization in the World Economy

Growing interest of international and Russian business in the cooperation with modern Africa and the strengthening of the developing countries positions in the world brought us to explore the foreign trade of African countries. The research aims to identify trends and new segments for the development of economic relations. We hypothesise that, despite the difficulties in national development, African countries has managed to create areas of successful development by changing the foreign trade structure under the influence of regionalization. The research is based on statistics gathered from international organisations, including the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, African Development Bank Group, and foreign trade statistics from Côte dIvoire. We used the academic literature in the field of foreign trade as the methodological base. The article analysed all types of foreign trade structure (geographical, territorial, organisational, and commodity ones) simultaneously at the global, regional and country levels. As a result of the analysis at the global level, we created a classification of African countries, which identified groups with positive changes in foreign trade structure. Thus , such countries can become leaders in the modern international cooperation. The analysis at the regional level determined some regional integration groups belonging to the category of "growth platforms". The main research result at the country level (on the example of Côte dIvoire) is the authors typology of internal districts. It allowed us to identify "core-regions" and "growing regions" and offer them as perspective points of interaction. These results can be used for economic cooperation with Africa in the framework of implementing the decisions of the "Russia-Africa" summit and economic forum (October 24, 2019, Russian Federation).