The economic region of Lahti, which includes the surrounding municipalities, was strongly affected by the collapse of Finnish-Soviet trade and by the recession in the early 1990s.
The value of production slumped, especially in the mechanical engineering industry and other manufacturing industries (e.g. the furniture industry). Production also decreased in the textile and clothing industry. In 1990, there were 90,370 jobs in the Lahti Region. The number of jobs diminished over the next couple of years, so that in 1993 there were fewer than 70,000 jobs in the Lahti Region. The number of jobs had slowly increased to 79,138 in 1999.
In 1995, R&D expenditure was FIM 715 per person, while Finland's average was about FIM 2050. The amount of Tekes (the National Technology Agency) funding in the Lahti Region grew 40% during 2004-2007 while the average growth in Finland was 60%