The Slovenia Times

Slovenia can boast of its infrastructure and Mediterranean access



Because of its high purchasing power and its attractiveness as an investment location, Slovenia is an interesting market for German companies, despite its small size. Around 40% of German foreign trade with countries of the former Yugoslavia is accounted for by Slovenia.

Slovenia's central location in Europe and the still existing connections to the countries of the former Yugoslavia and Central and Eastern Europe, make Slovenia an interesting location for investment and a platform for processing other markets, such as the Western Balkans. Investing in energy efficiency, digitisation or infrastructure development offers opportunities. Attractive as an investment location, the country also has a well-trained workforce, innovative power in the country should also be highlighted, and the universities and institutes are well developed in relation to the national size.

Slovenia has therefore been quite successful in attracting foreign investors in recent years. Foreign direct investment stock reached nearly US $12bn in 2015, compared to only US $1.8bn in 1995. According to UNCTAD, its share of GDP in 2015 was 27.7% (1995: 8.5%).

With its advantageous location, Slovenia can also boast of its infrastructure and Mediterranean access. The motorway network is developed with connections to all of its neighbours. Slovenia still has its advantages as a bridgehead to other countries of the former Yugoslavia thanks to its good regional language and market knowledge.

The business environment in Slovenia and business relations with Slovenian partners are better than in the region. In the 2016 World Bank Doing Business Report, Slovenia was ranked 29th out of 189 evaluated countries. The evaluation of Slovenia in the Global Competitiveness Report of the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2015/16 is favorable.

However, investors also want effective anti-corruption measures. The reason for this is seen in the close link between politics and business. There is also room for improvement in the tax burden on income and the flexibility of the applicable labour law. However, Slovenia scores better in this area than most other Central and Eastern European countries.

For the development and modernisation of Slovenia, in the EU funding period 2014 to 2020, almost EUR 4bn will be available from EU investment funds. The expansion and modernisation of infrastructure (especially the transport networks), projects in the area of e-mobility and energy efficiency, or programs to digitise the economy (Industry 4.0), will also open up a few business opportunities for German companies.

On the one hand, the Slovenian Business Club is going to be a member of our European umbrella association CEA-PME/European Entrepreneurs. On the other hand, we plan to intensify the bilateral cooperation between Slovenia and Germany-exchange of knowledge, finding business partners, joint events and workshops.


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