Slovakia fails to catch up with regional peers and the EU

Slovakia has made little progress in addressing the Commission’s 2019 recommendations.

BratislavaBratislava (Source: SME)

Slovakia is losing its economic battle after a decade of strong post-crisis economic growth.

The European Commission (EC), which recently published a report assessing Slovakia’s progress on structural reforms and the prevention of macroeconomic imbalances, said the country did not fully make use of favourable economic times and has failed to sufficiently implement reforms, reduce its deficit and debt, and improve in areas key to economic growth, including R&D, education, and innovation.

Read alsoSlovak economy sped up at the end of 2019 Read more 

“Slovakia’s strategies and reforms are relatively clear and effective on paper, but their implementation often remains poor,” the report reads.

Moreover, Slovakia’s progress in catching up with the European Union and other countries in Central Europe has slowed down. The report suggests the labour productivity gap, the country’s sub-optimal use of available EU funds, and regional disparities have all contributed to a slowdown.

“We experienced the highest catch-up pace between 2003 and 2008, and then from 2012 we have essentially been stagnating,” Lívia Vašáková of the EC Office in Slovakia said, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

A model based on low salaries and attracting direct foreign investment may stop working sooner or later. Policies will have to change, Vašáková claimed, to restart the Slovak economy. The country’s economic performance is lagging behind the EU average, remaining at about 75 percent of the EU’s gross national income.

Requirements for a good investment climate

The rest of this article is premium content at
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on and

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

Theme: European Union

Read more articles by the topic

Top stories

Man from Bojnice hospital probably first coronavirus-related death in Slovakia (news digest)

Aid for businesses goes to parliament, along with a measure about the residency of foreigners. Read your overview of news from Slovakia on March 31.

A medical worker eats during his break.

Prediction of coronavirus in Slovakia: New model counts with fewer infected cases

On the peak day (110th) 1,030 patients will need ventilators.

Igor Matovič (left) and Martin Smatana (right) presenting new model of coronavirus development in Slovakia.

Former minister Lajčák set to return to the Balkans

The former foreign affairs minister is one of Slovakia's top diplomats.

Miroslav Lajčák

Coronavirus measures work. Very few severe cases in Slovakia so far

Experts expect the peak in early July, but fewer infections than originally expected. Measures will need to last for more weeks, they say.

People waiting in front of the garden shop in Košice.