Why are countries in eastern Europe poorer than in western Europe?





Skerdian Meta

Taking into account the last 1,000 years we can count many reasons:


1.Reinassence took place in the west, which means that west Europeans were more advanced in poetry, science, arts and knowledge in general after 2–3 centuries of German fables and music, Italian opera,, gothic architecture end a lot more, which makes a society more advanced.

2.Spirit of freedom. The west had many struggles so the population can get enough freedom from the oppressing elites. Started with the Magna Carta in the UK, which led the foundation for a “free” nation, with some sort of rights and respect for the broader population. The French revolution, German and Italian unification, Spanish Reconquista, US independence war etc. The west fought for its freedom and the right to prosper.



3.The industrial revolution took place in the west, starting in the UK first, then spreading to north west Europe and north Italy. East Europe and China were mostly peasants and farmers until 1990s.

4.The spirit of business and enterpreneurship was born in the west. For the reasons mentioned above, and below, people in the west have a more advanced sense of business.



5. The philosophy of the east-west schism after WW2 was the co unist east would have no materialism, no private ownership, nothing. All food was being exported somewhere from all Easter agricultural countries. The western capitalism had materialism as the basic concept but without values, unless people embraced them themselves.

5. 二战后东西方分裂的哲学是,东方没有物质主义,没有私有制,什么都没有。所有的食物都是东方农业国家出口的。西方以物质主义为基本概念,但没有价值观,除非人们自己接受。




Kancheepuram Narasimhan

One reason I can think of:


Britain (Now UK): had 50 Asian/ African countries in their empire. Looted Gold/silver/tin, rubber, cloves, tea, Copper , petroleum -well every thing

France: Had huge colony in Africa, Asia to loot.

Nederland : had huge Indonesia ( called Dutch East India till 1946) to loot

Belgium had Congo to loot.





Spain had: Entire Central / South America (except Brz) to loot + Philippines in Asia

Portigal: had gigantic Brazil plus colonies in Africa/ India/ China/ Indonesia to loot.

Germany: had colony in Africa




BUT none of East african countries: Bulgaria/ Romania/ Serbia, Macedonia/ Poland, Czech, Hungary, Greece, Crotia, Slovenia, Bosnia had colonies to loot.





Earl William Morris

Well, this question isn't very specific, but the general presumption is that you're referring to financial wealth. Poverty is relative and there are different measures of poverty. Fiscally speaking almost all of Eastern Europe is economically poorer than Western Europe.

That's one measure of wealth, GDP. An exception here would be Finland. Financially speaking Finland, which shares a massive border with Russia and is in the Eastern European Time Zone is as wealthy or wealthier than numerous nations in Western Europe. The Czech Republic also falls into this group on a per capita basis.



However, government reserves, cash in hand, or in the bank, is not the only measure of wealth. There are areas of Eastern Europe that have wealth in natural resources that are untapped/underdeveloped. Finland also falls into this group, along with some of the Balkan Nations, Poland, Ukraine, and the two northernmost Baltic Nations, Estonia and Latvia which have some quite large and relatively untapped natural gas reserves.


When standard of living is considered it can be said that certain Eastern European nations do have a higher standard of living than large parts of their Western European neighbours. This is a complex subject and one must look at a litany of economic measurements to compare the two parts of Europe, and overall Western European nations are much wealthier than their counterparts in Eastern Europe, but there are exceptions and in the future this will change on a case by case basis.






The Roman Empire, at its zenith, controlled vast territories with an estimated population of over 50 million people, creating a vast internal market that facilitated trade and economic growth. In contrast, the territories of Eastern Europe, with their fragmented tribes, did not benefit from such large-scale economic integration.



During the height of the Hanseatic League in the 14th century, it comprised over 200 cities, facilitating trade routes that stretched from London to Novgorod. This trade network significantly boosted the economies of the member cities.

The Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries saw Western European countries surge ahead. For instance, by 1850, the United Kingdom had produced 53% of the world's coal and 50% of its iron. Eastern Europe, still largely agrarian, did not experience the same rapid industrial growth.



Post-World War II, the Marshall Plan provided over $12 billion (equivalent to roughly $130 billion today when adjusted for inflation) in aid to Western European countries. This financial injection played a crucial role in their post-war recovery. Meanwhile, Eastern European countries under Soviet influence did not receive such aid and often had to send reparations to the USSR.



By the end of the 20th century, the GDP per capita of Western European countries like Germany and France was over $20,000, while many Eastern European countries had figures below $5,000.

Today, while the gap has narrowed thanks to the European Union's efforts and the resilience of Eastern European nations, disparities remain. For instance, in 2019, Luxembourg, a Western European nation, had a GDP per capita of over $115,000, while Bulgaria, an Eastern European country, had a figure of just over $9,000.






A Dude

Because they are former vassals of the Soviet Union. They had the dual misfortune of being subject to ruinous Soviet economic policies while simultaneously having their resources plundered by the Russians. Then there is the political upheaval caused by the power vacuums left by the Soviet Union after its collapse. These aren’t things you just bounce back from.





Thuyết Vị Lai

Most Western European countries are former colonial powers, and there is no doubt that the wealth that Western Europeans accumulated from the 16th century until World War II was the looting of the entire world.

Also during this period, Southeast Europe was invaded by Ottoman Muslims and ruled for a few centuries until the Russians repeatedly defeated the Ottomans, and Southeast European countries have since regained their independence. ,

How can the robber be poorer than the robbed?







Federico Giancane

Short answer: Capitalism

Long answer: After the fall of the Eastern Bloc, the stable growth of Eastern European countries was cut short and there was a massive recession, especially in Russia, from which they never recovered. For the countries that joined the EU, they became part of a liberal shared market made specifically to exploit other countries at the advantage of Western Europe, so now many Eastern European countries are exploited by their own capitalist or quasi-(Poland, Hungary, Belarus, the Ukraine, Russia) AND by other capitalist countries (Romania, Bulgaria, the Baltics, Slovakia, Czechia)

简短回答:资  本主义

详细回答:东欧集团解体后,东欧国家的稳定增长被打断了,出现了大规模的经济衰退,尤其是俄罗斯,至今一直没有恢复。对于加入欧盟的国家来说,他们成了自由共享市场的一份子,这个市场就是为了利用西欧的优势来剥削其他国家而成立的,所以现在许多东欧国家都被他们自己的资  本主义政权(波兰、匈牙利、白俄罗斯、乌克兰、俄罗斯和其他资 本主义国家(罗马尼亚、保加利亚、波罗的海国家、斯洛伐克、捷克剥削。




Rasa Mišeikytė

Because of former Soviet Empire and current Russia’s desire to rule the world. When for so long being born in rich or land owner family was crime punishable and later economy was being managed by dumb leaders, sure Soviet economy was in ruins, which caused Perestroika (attempt to revive economy from “bottoms”). This, thankfully, gave opportunity to occupied middle European (Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia) and other countries to escape Soviet Empire, but also lead to end of this empire and further economical crash in all post-Soviet space because of broken production chains


It was all only 30 years ago when this crash happened and only about 20 years ago (around 1999) when economies reached pre-1990 level. So, basically, middle and eastern Europe economies had only 20 years to grow from very poor level, using only borrowed capital, because there wasn’t any own (contrary to East Germany, which was developed with West Germany capital). To make matters worse, Russia practically all accumulated wealth is using to engange in wars with it’s neighbours - Georgia, Moldova, Syria, Ukraine, …, so economy grow in Russia turns out to be a basically bad thing, leading to destruction in Russia’s neighourhood. As any kind of war is a big strain on economies.

So yes, reason of weak economy in post Soviet space is Russia’s imperialism



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