Assessment of the economic security of Baltic port cities’ competitiveness

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City competitiveness is a complex product of local and international conditions, local characteristics, social and economic superstructure, and the actions of individual companies. Although many scientific studies have examined the country’s and urban competitiveness, the competitiveness of port cities still needs to be assessed comprehensively, taking into account their crucial economic role. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the competitiveness and economic security of the Baltic port cities (Klaipėda, Riga, and Tallinn). Statistical processing and multi-criteria evaluation methods (SAW, COPRAS, and TOPSIS) were chosen to achieve this goal. The comparative analysis showed that the population change in port cities is not significant for the final result of the competitiveness assessment, and the unemployment rate in port cities is lower than in the country. The assessment of the competitiveness of port cities from the point of view of economic security shows (after checking such indicators as unemployment rate, company income, and infrastructure) that Tallinn is the most competitive port city according to the three multi-criteria evaluation methods, while Klaipėda is the least competitive. The assessment was carried out in three stages to monitor changes in the situation of port cities, compared to changes in a certain indicator and the costs of timely solutions or the improvement of the city’s position in relation to other cities.

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    • Figure 1. Distribution of cargo flows in Baltic Sea ports (2019)
    • Table 1. Factors and indicators representing the competitiveness of port cities
    • Table 2. Population dynamics in target port cities over the 2015–2020 period
    • Table 3. Unemployment rates in the target port cities during the 2015–2020 period, percent
    • Table 4. Employment by activities (2020)
    • Table 5. Assessment of the baseline economic environment in the target port cities by employing the COPRAS method
    • Table 6. Assessment of the economic development environment in the target port cities by employing the SAW method
    • Table 7. Assessment of the economic interoperability environment in the target port cities by employing the COPRAS method
    • Table 8. Evaluation of the competitiveness of the economic environment in the target port cities in terms of economic security by employing the TOPSIS method
    • Table 9. Average annual results representing economic evaluation of the competitiveness of target port cities based on different methods
    • Conceptualization
      Renata Činčikaitė, Kristina Čižiūnienė, Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Investigation
      Renata Činčikaitė, Kristina Čižiūnienė, Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Methodology
      Renata Činčikaitė
    • Resources
      Renata Činčikaitė
    • Software
      Renata Činčikaitė
    • Visualization
      Renata Činčikaitė, Kristina Čižiūnienė
    • Writing – original draft
      Renata Činčikaitė, Kristina Čižiūnienė, Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Data curation
      Kristina Čižiūnienė
    • Formal Analysis
      Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Supervision
      Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Validation
      Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė
    • Writing – review & editing
      Ieva Meidutė-Kavaliauskienė