title
macrohistory & world report

Slovak Republic

Map of Slovakia

Slovakia (capital Bratislava) and neighboring states

World Factbook as of November 2014: "Slovakia has made significant economic reforms since its separation from the Czech Republic in 1993. After a period of relative stagnation in the early and mid 1990s, reforms to the taxation, healthcare, pension, and social welfare systems helped Slovakia consolidate its budget, get on track to join the EU in 2004, and adopt the euro in January 2009. Major privatizations are nearly complete, the banking sector is almost entirely in foreign hands, and the government has facilitated a foreign investment boom with business friendly policies. Foreign direct investment (FDI), especially in the automotive and electronic sectors, fueled much of the growth until 2008. Cheap, skilled labor, low taxes, no dividend taxes, a relatively liberal labor code, and a favorable geographical location are Slovakia's main advantages to foreign investors. Growth returned, following a contraction in 2009, but has remained sluggish in large part due to continued weakness in external demand. In 2012 the government of Prime Minister Robert FICO rolled back some of Slovakia's pro-growth reforms to help shore up public finances. Corruption and slow dispute resolution remain key factors constraining economic growth."

Economic growth rate:
2011: 3.3%
2010: 4%

Unemployment rate
2011: 13.5%
2010: 12.5%

Public debt
2011: 43.4%
2010: 41% of GDP
2009: 37.1% of GDP

Export/import ratio
2011: exports 104.5% of imports in cash value – a favorable balance

Income Distribution – GINI index
Ranks 134 among 140 countries (lower rank number is less equal). More equal than Britain, which ranks 94th, and the US, which ranks 45th.

Health expenditures
2009: 8.5% of GDP

People

Living in an urban area
2008: 56%

Density for 2005: 111 persons per square kilometer.

Net migration rate
2012: A net gain of 0.29 persons per 1,000 population

Ethnicity
2001 census: Slovak 85.8%, Hungarian 9.7%, Roma 1.7%, Ruthenian/Ukrainian 1%, other and unspecified 1.8%

Religions
2001 census: Roman Catholic 68.9%, Protestant 10.8%, Greek Catholic 4.1%, other or unspecified 3.2%, none 13%

Geography

South of the Czech Republic and Poland, north of Hungary, east of Austria and west of Ukraine. Elongated, from west to east, 400 kilometers (250 miles), and from 80 to 160 kilometers north and south. Landlocked. Mountainous in the center and north, low lands in the south.

Government

Parliamentary democracy.

Capital: Bratislava.

Freedom of the Press
Slovakia has been listed in the top ten.

Recent History

Joined the European Union on 1 May 2004.

SOURCES:
The World Factbook

Copyright © 2009-2013 by Frank E. Smitha. All rights reserved.