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Introduction
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Transnational
Issues
  Introduction Back To Top

Background:
The dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire at the close of World War I allowed the Slovaks to join the closely related Czechs to form Czechoslovakia. Following the chaos of World War II, Czechoslovakia became a Communist nation within Soviet-dominated Eastern Europe. Soviet influence collapsed in 1989 and Czechoslovakia once more became free. The Slovaks and the Czechs agreed to separate peacefully on 1 January 1993. Slovakia joined both NATO and the EU in the spring of 2004 and the Eurozone on 1 January 2009.

  Geography Back To Top

Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural):
total: 1.04
per capita: 193 cu m/yr (2003)

Total renewable water resources:
50.1 cu km (2003)

Land boundaries:
total: 1,474 km
border countries: Austria 91 km, Czech Republic 197 km, Hungary 676 km, Poland 420 km, Ukraine 90 km

Environment - international agreements:
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Sulfur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Climate:
temperate; cool summers; cold, cloudy, humid winters

Map references:
Europe

Geographic coordinates:
48 40 N, 19 30 E

Natural resources:
brown coal and lignite; small amounts of iron ore, copper and manganese ore; salt; arable land

Elevation extremes:
lowest point: Bodrok River 94 m
highest point: Gerlachovsky Stit 2,655 m

Terrain:
rugged mountains in the central and northern part and lowlands in the south

Geography - note:
landlocked; most of the country is rugged and mountainous; the Tatra Mountains in the north are interspersed with many scenic lakes and valleys

Area:
total: 48,845 sq km
land: 48,800 sq km
water: 45 sq km

Location:
Central Europe, south of Poland

Coastline:
0 km (landlocked)

Area - comparative:
about twice the size of New Hampshire

Irrigated land:
1,830 sq km (2003)

Environment - current issues:
air pollution from metallurgical plants presents human health risks; acid rain damaging forests

Maritime claims:
none (landlocked)

Natural hazards:
NA

Land use:
arable land: 29.23%
permanent crops: 2.67%
other: 68.1% (2005)

  People Back To Top

Total fertility rate:
1.34 children born/woman (2008 est.)

Sex ratio:
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.6 male(s)/female
total population: 0.94 male(s)/female (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
less than 0.1% (2001 est.)

HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
fewer than 200 (2003 est.)

Life expectancy at birth:
total population: 75.17 years
male: 71.23 years
female: 79.32 years (2008 est.)

Literacy:
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 99.6%
male: 99.7%
female: 99.6% (2001 est.)

Net migration rate:
0.3 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Ethnic groups:
Slovak 85.8%, Hungarian 9.7%, Roma 1.7%, Ruthenian/Ukrainian 1%, other and unspecified 1.8% (2001 census)

Median age:
total: 36.5 years
male: 34.8 years
female: 38.2 years (2008 est.)

Population:
5,455,407 (July 2008 est.)

Education expenditures:
3.9% of GDP (2005)

Population growth rate:
0.143% (2008 est.)

Languages:
Slovak (official) 83.9%, Hungarian 10.7%, Roma 1.8%, Ukrainian 1%, other or unspecified 2.6% (2001 census)

Death rate:
9.5 deaths/1,000 population (2008 est.)

Infant mortality rate:
total: 6.98 deaths/1,000 live births
male: 8.15 deaths/1,000 live births
female: 5.75 deaths/1,000 live births (2008 est.)

HIV/AIDS - deaths:
fewer than 100 (2001 est.)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education):
total: 15 years
male: 14 years
female: 15 years (2006)

Age structure:
0-14 years: 16.1% (male 448,083/female 427,643)
15-64 years: 71.7% (male 1,947,112/female 1,961,788)
65 years and over: 12.3% (male 250,787/female 419,994) (2008 est.)

Birth rate:
10.64 births/1,000 population (2008 est.)

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

Nationality:
noun: Slovak(s)
adjective: Slovak

  Government Back To Top

Diplomatic representation from the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Vincent OBSITNIK
embassy: Hviezdoslavovo Namestie 4, 81102 Bratislava
mailing address: P.O. Box 309, 814 99 Bratislava
telephone: [421] (2) 5443-3338
FAX: [421] (2) 5441-8861

National holiday:
Constitution Day, 1 September (1992)

Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal

Government type:
parliamentary democracy

Political pressure groups and leaders:
Association of Towns and Villages or ZMOS; Confederation of Trade Unions or KOZ; Entrepreneurs Association of Slovakia or ZPS; Federation of Employers' Associations of the Slovak Republic; National Union of Employers or RUZ; Slovak Chamber of Commerce and Industry or SOPK; The Business Alliance of Slovakia or PAS

Diplomatic representation in the US:
chief of mission: Ambassador Peter BURIAN
chancery: 3523 International Court NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone: [1] (202) 237-1054
FAX: [1] (202) 237-6438
consulate(s) general: Los Angeles, New York

International organization participation:
Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS (observer), CE, CEI, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, EIB, EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NAM (guest), NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, Schengen Convention, SECI (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNIDO, UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCL, WCO, WEU (associate partner), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC

Legislative branch:
unicameral National Council of the Slovak Republic or Narodna Rada Slovenskej Republiky (150 seats; members are elected on the basis of proportional representation to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 17 June 2006 (next to be held in 2010)
election results: percent of vote by party - Smer 29.1%, SDKU 18.4%, SMK 11.7%, SNS 11.7%, LS-HZDS 8.8%, KDH 8.3%, other 12%; seats by party - Smer 50, SDKU-DS 31, SMK 20, SNS 19, LS-HZDS 16, KDH 14; note - seats by party as of December 2008 - Smer 50, SDKU-DS 28, SMK 20, SNS 19, LS-HZDS 15, KDH 9, nonaffiliated 9

Legal system:
civil law system based on Austro-Hungarian codes; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; legal code modified to comply with the obligations of Organization on Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and to expunge Marxist-Leninist legal theory

Flag description:
three equal horizontal bands of white (top), blue, and red superimposed with the coat of arms of Slovakia (consisting of a red shield bordered in white and bearing a white Cross of Lorraine surmounting three blue hills); the coat of arms is centered vertically and offset slightly to the hoist side

Independence:
1 January 1993 (Czechoslovakia split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia)

Country name (Goverment):
conventional long form: Slovak Republic
conventional short form: Slovakia
local long form: Slovenska Republika
local short form: Slovensko

Political parties and leaders:
parties in the Parliament:: Christian Democratic Movement or KDH [Pavol HRUSOVSKY]; Direction-Social Democracy or Smer-SD [Robert FICO]; Party of the Hungarian Coalition or SMK [Pal CSAKY]; People's Party - Movement for a Democratic Slovakia or LS-HZDS [Vladimir MECIAR]; Slovak Democratic and Christian Union-Democratic Party or SDKU-DS [Mikulas DZURINDA]; Slovak National Party or SNS [Jan SLOTA]
selected parties outside the Parliament:: Agrarian Party of the Provinces or ASV [Vladimir GOZORA]; Alliance of the New Citizen or ANO [Pavol RUSKO]; Civic Conservative Party or OKS [Peter ZAJAC]; Free Forum [Zuzana MARTINAKOVA]; Mission 21 - New Christian Democracy or MISIA 21 [Ivan SIMKO]; Movement for Democracy or HZD [Jozef GRAPA]; Party of the Democratic Left or SDL [Ladislav KOZMON]; Prosperita Slovenska or PS [Frantisek A. ZVRSKOVEC]; Slovak Communist Party or KSS [Jozef HRDLICKA]; Slovak People's Party or SLS [Jozef SASIK]; Union of the Workers of Slovakia or ZRS [Jan LUPTAK]

Capital:
name: Bratislava
geographic coordinates: 48 09 N, 17 07 E
time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Constitution:
ratified 1 September 1992, effective 1 January 1993; changed in September 1998 to allow direct election of the president; amended February 2001 to allow Slovakia to apply for NATO and EU membership

Executive branch:
chief of state: President Ivan GASPAROVIC (since 15 June 2004)
head of government: Prime Minister Robert FICO (since 4 July 2006); Deputy Prime Ministers Dusan CAPLOVIC, Robert KALINAK, Stefan HARABIN, Jan MIKOLAJ (since 4 July 2006)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the president on the recommendation of the prime minister
elections: president elected by popular vote for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held 3 April and 17 April 2004 (next to be held no later than April 2009); following National Council elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of a majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the president
election results: Ivan GASPAROVIC elected president in runoff; percent of vote - Ivan GASPAROVIC 59.9%, Vladimir MECIAR 40.1%

Administrative divisions:
8 regions (kraje, singular - kraj); Banskobystricky, Bratislavsky, Kosicky, Nitriansky, Presovsky, Trenciansky, Trnavsky, Zilinsky

Judicial branch:
Supreme Court (judges are elected by the National Council); Constitutional Court (judges appointed by president from group of nominees approved by the National Council); Special Court (judges elected by a council of judges and appointed by president)

  Economy Back To Top

Exports - partners:
Germany 21.4%, Czech Republic 12.6%, France 6.7%, Italy 6.4%, Poland 6.2%, Hungary 6%, Austria 5.8%, UK 4.8% (2007)

Electricity - consumption:
26 billion kWh (2006 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
4.25% (31 December 2007)

Electricity - imports:
12.73 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Current account balance:
-$5.359 billion (2008 est.)

Debt - external:
$45.15 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Unemployment rate:
7.4% (2008 est.)

Oil - exports:
72,240 bbl/day (2005)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
$22,600 (2008 est.)

Investment (gross fixed):
25.9% of GDP (2008 est.)

Stock of domestic credit:
$41.76 billion (31 December 2007)

GDP (purchasing power parity):
$123.1 billion (2008 est.)

GDP (official exchange rate):
$100.6 billion (2008 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
26 (2005)

Exchange rates:
Slovak koruny (SKK) per US dollar - 21.05 (2008 est.), 24.919 (2007), 29.611 (2006), 31.018 (2005), 32.257 (2004)

GDP - real growth rate:
7% (2008 est.)

Stock of money:
$26.17 billion (31 December 2007)

Labor force:
2.692 million (2008 est.)

Imports - partners:
Germany 22.1%, Czech Republic 17.3%, Russia 9.2%, Hungary 6.7%, Austria 5.1%, Poland 4.9%, South Korea 4.7% (2007)

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
4.7% (2008 est.)

GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 2.6%
industry: 33.4%
services: 64% (2008 est.)

Oil - imports:
134,100 bbl/day (2005)

Exports:
$79.12 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Natural gas - consumption:
6.216 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Currency (code):
Slovak koruna (SKK)

Economy - overview:
Slovakia has made significant economic reforms since its separation from the Czech Republic in 1993. Reforms to the taxation, healthcare, pension, and social welfare systems helped Slovakia to consolidate its budget and get on track to join the EU in 2004 and to adopt the euro in January 2009. Major privatizations are nearly complete, the banking sector is almost entirely in foreign hands, and the government has helped facilitate a foreign investment boom with business friendly policies such as labor market liberalization and a 19% flat tax. Foreign investment in the automotive sector has been strong. Slovakia's economic growth exceeded expectations in 2001-08 despite the general European slowdown. Unemployment, at an unacceptable 18% in 2003-04, dropped to 7.4% in 2008 but remains the economy's Achilles heel. Despite its 2006 pre-election promises to loosen fiscal policy and reverse the previous DZURINDA government's pro-market reforms, FICO's cabinet has thus far been careful to keep a lid on spending in order to meet euro adoption criteria and has focused on regulating energy and food prices instead.

Natural gas - exports:
180 million cu m (2007 est.)

Imports - commodities:
machinery and transport equipment 41.1%, intermediate manufactured goods 19.3%, fuels 12.3%, chemicals 9.8%, miscellaneous manufactured goods 10.2% (2003)

Industries:
metal and metal products; food and beverages; electricity, gas, coke, oil, nuclear fuel; chemicals and manmade fibers; machinery; paper and printing; earthenware and ceramics; transport vehicles; textiles; electrical and optical apparatus; rubber products

Electricity - exports:
11.85 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Population below poverty line:
21% (2002)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
7.99% (31 December 2007)

Stock of quasi money:
$21.11 billion (31 December 2007)

Electricity - production:
26.17 billion kWh (2007 est.)

Imports:
$79.76 billion f.o.b. (2008 est.)

Oil - proved reserves:
9 million bbl (1 January 2008 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 4.7%, industry 38.8%, construction 56.5%, services 55.9% (2005)

Natural gas - proved reserves:
14.16 billion cu m (1 January 2008 est.)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$19.47 billion (31 December 2008 est.)

Oil - consumption:
82,860 bbl/day (2007 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$1.564 billion (2008 est.)

Public debt:
35% of GDP (2008 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$47.68 billion (2008 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
$6.971 billion (31 December 2007)

Currency code:
SKK

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.1%
highest 10%: 20.9% (1996)

Exports - commodities:
vehicles 25.9%, machinery and electrical equipment 21.3%, base metals 14.6%, chemicals and minerals 10.1%, plastics 5.4% (2004)

Economic aid - recipient:
$235 million in available EU structural adjustment and cohesion funds (2004)

Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 30.3%
hydro: 16%
nuclear: 53.6%
other: 0% (2001)

Natural gas - imports:
6.268 billion cu m (2007 est.)

Natural gas - production:
128 million cu m (2007 est.)

Budget:
revenues: $44.86 billion
expenditures: $46.96 billion (2008 est.)

Fiscal year:
calendar year

Oil - production:
12,770 bbl/day (2007 est.)

  Communications Back To Top

Internet users:
2.35 million (2007)

Telephones - main lines in use:
1.151 million (2007)

Televisions:
2.62 million (1997)

Internet country code:
.sk

Radio broadcast stations:
AM 15, FM 78, shortwave 2 (1998)

Radios:
3.12 million (1997)

Telephones - mobile cellular:
6.068 million (2007)

Television broadcast stations:
80 (national broadcasting 6, regional 7, local 67) (2004)

Telephone system:
general assessment: Slovakia has a modern telecommunications system that has expanded dramatically in recent years with the growth in cellular services
domestic: analog system is now receiving digital equipment and is being enlarged with fiber-optic cable, especially in the larger cities; 3 companies provide nationwide cellular services
international: country code - 421; 3 international exchanges (1 in Bratislava and 2 in Banska Bystrica) are available; Slovakia is participating in several international telecommunications projects that will increase the availability of external services

Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
6 (2000)

Internet hosts:
717,744 (2008)

  Transportation Back To Top

Waterways:
172 km (on Danube River) (2008)

Pipelines:
gas 6,769 km; oil 416 km (2007)

Railways:
total: 3,662 km
broad gauge: 100 km 1.520-m gauge
standard gauge: 3,512 km 1.435-m gauge (1,588 km electrified)
narrow gauge: 50 km (1.000-m or 0.750-m gauge) (2006)

Ports and terminals:
Bratislava, Komarno

Heliports:
1 (2007)

Merchant marine:
total: 51
by type: bulk carrier 5, cargo 42, refrigerated cargo 4
foreign-owned: 47 (Bulgaria 6, Germany 3, Greece 2, Ireland 1, Israel 4, Italy 2, Poland 2, Russia 1, Slovenia 1, Syria 2, Turkey 10, Ukraine 12, UK 1) (2008)

Airports - with paved runways:
total: 20
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 2
1,524 to 2,437 m: 3
914 to 1,523 m: 3
under 914 m: 10 (2007)

Roadways:
total: 43,761 km
paved: 38,085 km (includes 316 km of expressways)
unpaved: 5,676 km (2006)

Airports - with unpaved runways:
total: 15
914 to 1,523 m: 8
under 914 m: 7 (2007)

Airports:
35 (2007)

  Military Back To Top

Military service age and obligation:
17-30 years of age for voluntary military service; conscription abolished in 2006; women are eligible to serve (2007)

Manpower available for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,420,966
females age 16-49: 1,386,259 (2008 est.)

Manpower fit for military service:
males age 16-49: 1,166,833
females age 16-49: 1,156,874 (2008 est.)

Military branches:
Armed Forces of the Slovak Republic (Ozbrojene Sily Slovenskej Republiky): Land Forces (Pozemne Sily), Air Forces (Vzdusne Sily) (2008)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually:
male: 38,183
female: 36,388 (2008 est.)

Military expenditures:
1.87% of GDP (2005 est.)

  Transnational Issues Back To Top

Disputes - international:
bilateral government, legal, technical and economic working group negotiations continued in 2006 between Slovakia and Hungary over Hungary's completion of its portion of the Gabcikovo-Nagymaros hydroelectric dam project along the Danube; as a member state that forms part of the EU's external border, Slovakia has implemented the strict Schengen border rules

Illicit drugs:
transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin bound for Western Europe; producer of synthetic drugs for regional market; consumer of ecstasy

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