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Business environment index drops

SLOVAKIA’S business environment index recorded a drop of 2.58 percent quarter-on-quarter to 62.2 points in third quarter of the year, the Business Alliance of Slovakia (PAS) informed on December 3, citing results of its own survey.

SLOVAKIA’S business environment index recorded a drop of 2.58 percent quarter-on-quarter to 62.2 points in third quarter of the year, the Business Alliance of Slovakia (PAS) informed on December 3, citing results of its own survey.

“The marked drop can be put down to the dissatisfaction of entrepreneurs with the state’s tax policies, inconsistent enforcement of the principle of equality before the law and unstable legislation,” said business environment index project manager Martin Hassler, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

The most notable drop among the factors that have an impact on the overall figure was legislation associated with taxes, fees and investments.

“Except for keeping VAT on the level of 20 percent, the unfavourable evaluation in 3Q 2014 can be ascribed to the gradually unveiled changes in the income tax legislation,” Hassel said, as quoted by TASR. “Also of negative impact were increased expenditures of entrepreneurs due to legislation on the protection and endorsement of public health.”

Moreover, entrepreneurs gave poor evaluations to the bracket of comprehensibility, usage and stability of legislation.

“Constant alterations of laws associated with business cause problems to entrepreneurs, as they interfere with long-term plan making, require that businesses allocate their capacities to monitor the legislative developments, and last but not least, they increase the spending associated with adjustments with respect to new requirements emerging from the amended laws,” Hassler added.

The PAS survey also indicated that businesses view in a very negative light what they call an unequal approach on the part of the government to individual entrepreneurs. According to the respondents, the government is in favour of a strategy entailing the provision of assistance to large investments, while small- and mid-sized businesses are ignored.

Conversely, among the things that the respondents found to be the most positive was a perceived improvement in the approach towards financial resources, which has been caused by increasing willingness of banks to provide loans to entrepreneurs at lower interest rates.

Other positively evaluated factors were the stability and predictability of exchange rates and the regulation of cross-border trade, as reported by TASR.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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