As a big fan of the trading aspect of this game, I think Ramul has been a detriment to the game. It used to be you scoured the map for trades, trying to figure out what you could trade your stuff for so you could trade the results of that trade to someone that actually offered you something you wanted. Nowadays trading is more like... lets see what I can get for this... lets see whats offered... hmm, not much out there, lets just go to Ramul. Its a much more viable strategy now to just pump your production to max then dump it on Ramul for what you need.
I think we need reduce the power of the omnipresent Ramul. Perhaps make him wander the map. You can only trade with him when he is in view. You can trap him by closing your borders when he is in your square, then only you can trade with him. However this makes him annoyed and his prices go up, plus you annoy your fellow battle miners and they might threaten you to let him go or be nuked.
Finally, so what do we do about players stuck somewhere with no one to trade glass with, or whatever? How about introducing trade routes, that work kinda like outposts... you can construct routes leading to people you want to trade with. Routes can be destroyed by warfare or other things (need to flesh this out) and then need to be rebuilt... but this puts the economy back into the hands of the players instead of most people just dumping their production on Ramul.
I think diplomats, docks and embassies have opened the way for a more extensive global trading system that could reduce reliance on Ramul. Essentially, you would be able to see and take the trades of anyone, so long as:
a) You have a Diplomat with them, and b) Both you and they have an Embassy, or c) Both you and they have a Dock.
Ideally, if you were out in the middle of the ocean, your trade routes would only be active if you had a dock.