The Creative industry in Slovakia
In the Slovak – context, the definition of the sector as the creative industries was used for the first time in the part of the government material – Basis of the Concept to Promote Cultural and Creative Industries in the Slovak Republic, acknowledged by the Slovak Government at the end of 2011. However, this material was created thanks to the activities of the Creative Industry Forum (www.ciforum.sk) which has been operating in Slovakia since 2008 and whose goal is to cover entities in the creative industries, promote the sector itself, and represent its interests in society.
In 2013, the company Neulogy, a.s., in collaboration with the Creative Industry Forum developed an extensive study for the Ministry of Culture entitled Report on the Status and Potential of Creative Industries in Slovakia. For the first time, it summarized the available data on this sector, mapped particular sub-areas and proposed a fundamental set of solutions and measures for the promotion and development of the creative industries in Slovakia. A major part of the text is based on this study or quotes it directly. With thise material, the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic and the Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic prepared another material titled Basis of the Creative Industries Development Strategy in the Slovak Republic. It was approved by the Government in 2014, followed by the Action Plan for the Implementation of the Creative Industries Development Strategy in the Slovak Republic (2015).
high-income, EU-member European economy; major electronics and automobile exporter; new anticorruption and judiciary reforms; low unemployment; low regional innovation; strong financial sector
Slovakia’s economy suffered from a slow start in the first years after its separation from the Czech Republic in 1993, due to the country’s authoritarian leadership and high levels of corruption, but economic reforms implemented after 1998 have placed Slovakia on a path of strong growth. With a population of 5.4 million, the Slovak Republic has a small, open economy driven mainly by automobile and electronics exports, which account for more than 80% of GDP. Slovakia joined the EU in 2004 and the euro zone in 2009. The country’s banking sector is sound and predominantly foreign owned.
Slovakia has been a regional FDI champion for several years, attractive due to a relatively low-cost yet skilled labor force, and a favorable geographic location in the heart of Central Europe. Exports and investment have been key drivers of Slovakia’s robust growth in recent years. The unemployment rate fell to historical lows in 2017, and rising wages fueled increased consumption, which played a more prominent role in 2017 GDP growth. A favorable outlook for the Eurozone suggests continued strong growth prospects for Slovakia during the next few years, although inflation is also expected to pick up.
Among the most pressing domestic issues potentially threatening the attractiveness of the Slovak market are shortages in the qualified labor force, persistent corruption issues, and an inadequate judiciary, as well as a slow transition to an innovation-based economy. The energy sector in particular is characterized by unpredictable regulatory oversight and high costs, in part driven by government interference in regulated tariffs. Moreover, the government’s attempts to maintain low household energy prices could harm the profitability of domestic energy firms while undercutting energy efficiency initiatives.