Trends towards globalization in Eastern Europe Trends towards globalization in Eastern Europe J. Tóth, MOL Plc. Abstract. The reshaping of East European economies shows considerable differentiation at present stage of transition. Consequently, the region's petroleum industries have been restructured and privatized differently, in dissimilar competition environments. The paper will briefly review the outcomes of the changes. The countries of the region, with the exception of Russia, are net oil importers; they endeavor to establish partnerships focusing on downstream. The option will be discussed: the companies are likely to be owned by strategic investors or they try to ensure their growth by creating regional partnerships. The entities of newly emerged states face big challenges finding the appropriate strategy. Examples of the industry's endeavors will be provided like the joint operation of the Druzhba-Adria pipeline system that makes the export of Russian oil possible to the Mediterranean. The paper will consider the impacts of the possible EU membership on the region's refining industry necessitating the compliance with the strict environmental requirements. It will be stressed that globalization can primarily be achieved through regional partnerships or alliances enabling simultaneously to meet the necessary growth criteria. The paper will assess short and longer term prospects for the first decade of the new millenium. Figure 1 Eastern Europe in 2000 its everyday use has a geo-political meaning i.e. 1. Introduction it means the region lying eastward from the borders of the European Union. While this Eastern Europe in 2000 12 new states · Bosnia Hercegovina · Byelarus · Croatia · Czech Republic · Estonia · Latvia · Lithuania · Macedonia · Moldva · Slovakia · Slovenia East Europe is the region, which has recently region earlier included nine, today it embraces nineteen independent states. Significant changes have occurred not only from political but also undergone the fastest societal fundamental changes in the modern history of mankind. New statehoods have been created in a very short period of time. The definition "East Europe" in Trends towards globalization in Eastern Europe from economic point of view. In each of the however, is far from being completed. Four countries market economies have been created countries were more advanced than the others in and private capital has been involved. Of course this transition process; the Czech Republic, there were considerable differences between the Hungary, Poland and Slovenia. So it is not by cases. The previously state-owned economies chance that these countries have reached better were transformed in a short while. This process, results in adhering to international organizations. 25 20 15 Mt/year 1998 10 5 0 Latvia Bulgaria Croatia Estonia Hungary Poland Lithuania Rumania Slovakia Slovenia Ukraine Czech Republic Bosnia Hercegovina Figure 2. Net oil import of East Europe 2.