SLOVAKIA’s foreign trade is highly focused on countries of the European Union, which represents a potential trade policy risk, the Economy Ministry wrote in its analytical evaluation of results and trends of foreign trade of the Slovak Republic in 2012, which the cabinet approved in its June 12 session, as reported by the SITA newswire.
The trade policy’s strong dependence on development of the economic environment in the EU prepares the ground for a possible negative impact on the trade balance, the paper maintains.
“Taking this fact into account, it is further necessary, in addition to orientation toward European Union markets, to also encourage diversification of trade activities with other countries,” reads the material.
Slovakia’s share of exports to EU countries last year accounted for 83.9 percent. It remained very high despite the fact that for the first time this share decreased in year-on-year terms. The Economy Ministry considers this to indicate the start of a favourable development in foreign trade towards reducing dependence on European markets that do not have significant growth potential. Slovakia recorded its highest growth in exports to countries outside the EU, in Africa, Asia and the Americas.
The Economy Ministry lists the countries in which it sees high potential for export growth: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, the Balkans, Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The ministry also sees growth potential in countries of East and South-East Asia, particularly China, South Korea and India. Given the gradual liberalisation of trade, the ministry also sites highly advanced economies, such as the US, Japan, Canada and Australia, as well as other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the countries of Latin America, North Africa and South Africa.