August 19, 2018

The Slovak Republic 25 years After

By H.E. Roman Buzek, Ambassador of Slovakia in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

On the 1st of January 2018, it has been already 25 years since the amicable, well-negotiated and smooth dissolution of the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic brought into existence two successor democratic states: the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic. Many doubted whether the separation of two countries was going to be successful. Many feared the separation would bring yet another bloody conflict in the heart of Europe. But these fears proved groundless as the split was truly peaceful and friendly.

Just like two siblings who grew up together under one roof and then decided to set up their own houses, two countries remain remarkably close in spite of their independent domiciles. Since 1993 Slovakia and the Czech Republic represent an unparalleled example of good neighborly relations and friendship based on the same values and principles.

Spis Castle, Slovakia.

The Slovak Republic at age of 25 is a stable and prosperous country. Still young, but ambitious, it is a reliable and trustworthy member of the international community who takes its share of responsibility for maintaining international peace and prosperity, be it as a growing donor of international assistance or as an active participant in various peacekeeping operations. Holding its first ever Presidency of the Council of the European Union in 2016, Slovakia proved its established position in the international community. Miroslav Lajčák, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, is currently presiding over the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly. From July 2018, once again Slovakia will chair the Visegrad 4 Group. Furthermore, Slovakia is now preparing for its presidency of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in 2019.

National Theatre

Throughout the years the Kingdom of the Netherlands has been one of the partners that provided Slovakia with instrumental support and assistance in various fields of socio-economic development and in joining both the European Union and NATO 14 years ago. The current relationship between the two countries is based on the same European values and perspectives for the common future in the European Union.

The Netherlands has been and still is one of the most prominent foreign investors in Slovakia. The cooperation develops very well in all fields. The state visit of Her Majesty Queen Beatrix to Slovakia in 2007 reciprocated by the visit of President of the Slovak Republic Ivan Gašparovič to the Netherlands in 2012 proved the excellent relations between the two countries as well as the potential for their further development. The two countries currently enjoy vibrant and growing cooperation in all fields: politics, trade and business; education and research; and culture.

During its 25 years of independence, Slovakia has undergone series of challenging economic reforms to become a successful and prosperous country joining the single European currency in 2009. The automotive industry is the backbone of the country´s economy with over 1 million cars produced last year. Land Rover / Jaguar is expected to start its production in Nitra later this year joining already existing production facilities of Volkswagen in Bratislava, Peugeot/Citroen in Trnava and Kia in Žilina.

Another perspective branch with huge development potential is mountain tourism which might be particularly interesting for foreign tourists – both in summer and winter time. Slovakia located in the very heart of Europe offers lots of other recreational possibilities, including welldeveloped spa network providing relief with various illnesses; many opportunities for relaxing, enjoying the nature or historical architecture and last but not least tasting traditional Slovak cuisine and various local wine and beer production.

Young and modern, Slovakia at its age of 25 is full of confidence and visions for the years to come.

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