Slovenia: Country and Foreign Investment
Koper, Slovenia’s large freight port, was established in 1957 and lies on the shortest transport route linking commercial centres in Central and Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean and countries along the Suez Canal. The port is being expanded, with a third pier under construction to replace the container and ro-ro terminal at Pier I in order to substantially increase capacity. The entire port has been given Free Trade Zone status – businesses can qualify for tax benefits so long as they export at least 51% of the goods and services they produce; those located in other special economic zones can also benefit from preferential tax treatment.
Slovenia benefits from a well-developed rail network, with good links to neighbouring countries. Telecommunications are also well developed. A 2008 survey found that 58% of Slovenians aged between 10 and 74 are Internet users. Mobile phone use is widespread.
Real estate in Slovenia has suffered from the global recession, with prices falling since 2007, after an average increase of 13% since 2004 until the downturn. In July 2012, the cost of one square metre of real estate was around EUR2,500 to EUR2,900.
The central bank is the Bank of Slovenia, which was established in 1991; there are a number of national banks, including Nova KBM, Abanka and Banka Koper, and a number of foreign bank branches.