Slovak cabinet approves investment stimuli. Three companies – Continental Matador Rubber, Railway Casted Components and Brovedani Slovakia – received significant investment stimulus totalling €33.6 million. The companies will invest in Slovakia more than €284 million into expansion of their local production and create almost 1,100 new jobs. Continental will get €20 million, Railway Casted Components will receive nearly €10 million and Brovedani about €3.6 million.

Slovak debt debuts on the Japanese market. For the first time in its history Slovakia sold state bonds on the Japanese market. In doing so, the country continued the diversification of its debt. In the past, Slovakia has sold bonds denominated in Swiss francs, Czech crowns and US dollars, as well as in euros. This time, Slovakia sold two types of bonds, worth a total of JPY29.8 billion (€235 million). They were the first Slovak bonds ever denominated in Japanese yen. Sales of the first type of bond, payable on June 24, 2016, with a 0.72-percent coupon rate yielded JPY25.8 billion. The remaining JPY4.2 billion was raised from a second bond payable on June 25, 2018, with a 0.99-percent coupon rate.

Tax Freedom Day arrives two days later. The first day in a given year on which people have earned enough to fund the state’s annual tax demands fell on June 3 in Slovakia in 2013, according to an analysis by the Association of Tax Payers and the F. A. Hayek Foundation. This means that Slovaks satisfied their tax duties later than in 2012, when Tax Freedom Day fell on June 1.

Grandwood withdraws investment plans. The Grandwood project to construct a wood processing plant in eastern Slovakia ended before it got off the ground. The company wanted to invest €42 million and employ 390 people over four years, and to accomplish this it sought a government stimulus worth €21.3 million. However, after suspicions emerged in the Slovak media of Grandwood making false claims about having international ties and forging a bank guarantee, the company withdrew its plans. The company has ascribed its withdrawal from the project to a negative media campaign.
Highway construction remains priority. State Secretary of the Ministry of Transport, Viktor Stromček, insists that the ministry is sticking to a timeline for completing the Košice-Bratislava highway by 2019.

Slovak Telekom may end up in private hands. The government confirmed plans for the sale of the 49-percent share in Slovak Telekom (ST). It will be either be sold directly or made through a stock exchange. Economy Minister Tomáš Malatinský said after the October 16 government session that the state will sell its minority share in ST, but not in 2013. One of the possible buyers is Deutsche Telekom, which already owns a 51 percent share.

THE YEAR IN BUSINESS

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October
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