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German companies find Slovakia highly attractive

German investors view Slovakia as the most attractive location for investment in Central and Eastern Europe, according to the results of a survey by the Slovak-German Trade and Industry Chamber (SNOPK) that were announced on March 27.

German investors view Slovakia as the most attractive location for investment in Central and Eastern Europe, according to the results of a survey by the Slovak-German Trade and Industry Chamber (SNOPK) that were announced on March 27.

"German investors evaluated Slovakia's attractiveness for investment at 1.95. Slovakia is therefore ahead of the Czech Republic (1.99) and Slovenia (2.28) in the rankings," Markus Halt of SNOPK told SLOVAKIA.

He added that Slovakia was praised in particular for its EU membership, low taxes and a transparent and simple tax system, the TASR newswire wrote.

The survey, which involved 95 companies from the areas of industry, trade and services, also revealed that as many as 86 of the firms questioned would be willing to place their investment in Slovakia again. According to more than two-thirds of the companies, the state of Slovakia's economy is currently positive, although only 27 percent expect it to improve further, while 61 percent believe that it will be subject to a downturn.

Nevertheless, half of the German investors expect their business situation to improve this year, with over 40 percent of the companies planning to raise or at least maintain their investment expenditure. In addition, more than half of the firms want to hire more staff in 2008. However, due to a lack of qualified personnel encountered recently, they are calling for education reforms, which, according to them, are especially needed in secondary vocational education.

The Slovak-German Trade and Industry Chamber was set up in 2005 and represents the interests of around 240 member companies that provide employment to 70,000 people in Slovakia. TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports

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