The impact of Russia is more evident in Southeast Finland than in other parts of the country. If the economic situation and development in Russia remain more stable than those of the Euro zone, it will open up new opportunities for this region. However, the utilisation of Southeast Finland’s advantageous location requires the development of border-crossing points and traffic connections as well as the development of shopping travel, tourism and other business, business expertise and logistics.
The increasing integration in the production structures of Southeast Finland and Northwest Russia is apparent, and this exerts an effect on cultural-social convergence as well. The visa waiver would play an important role. The cross-border transport of products, goods and people has increased. Passenger travel is as busy as it has ever been, which also shows as duty-free sales records and an increasing number of hotel stays. Freight traffic is still increasing.
During the year 2013 there were more than 10 million passengers on the South East Finland border crossing points (picture). Nuijamaa in Lappeenranta and Vaalimaa (Highway 6 and 13) in Miehikkälä ( E18, Highway 7) are the busiest crossing points, but also Imatra has become important .