The presented case study provides a review of the rationales behind state ownership and the decisions to establish SOEs and delineates specific implications of these policies. Its main focus are SOEs in Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, and Slovakia.
Automotive industry plays one of the most important roles in economies of the Visegrad Group countries. The sector became the regional leader in export and a reason for close ties among countries. Hyundai Kia in the Czech Republic and Slovakia is a textbook example of how one company ignores artificial national borders.
The first 16 years of the post-1989 period in Slovakia can be described as an era of privatization. A majority of the state-owned economy was transformed into a market-oriented model, where state-owned enterprises (SOEs) remain the only key player in several sectors.
French President Emmanuel Macron has embarked on a mission to Central and Eastern Europe with a strange idea. He lobbies for a directive to shorten the stay and to increase the salaries of our posted workers, from the minimum wage level, to salaries equal up to the level of French or German employees in the sector.
In Slovakia, political discourse around Central Europe continues to be dominated by the growing popularity of extreme solutions. This trend is expressly demonstrated by current popular preferences attributed to parties on both the extreme left and right in all countries of the central European region.
Since the great expansion of the EU in 2004, we are constantly hearing concerns about so-called social dumping from hard-core, traditional EU members. What at first seems to be an action against imminent threats to social standards in Western Europe is in fact a sophisticated instrument to eliminate competition from new EU members.
Two interesting debates are being led simultaneously in Slovakia. One on subsidies to support the mining of lignite in the upper Nitra region and the other on the unconditional basic income for all. The interconnection between the two could bring so many positive effects that I am left to wonder why nobody has thought of this so far.
Let´s be honest with ourselves: the Slovak economy and the economies of other countries on the brink of the potential core have fundamentally different parameters. What we share is the euro and our desire to belong to the core. However, this is not enough.
INESS has been one of the few opponents of the regulation. We included the abolition of the cash payment restrictions in our long-term competitiveness program Top20. Also, thanks to our advocacy, the (currently) biggest opposition party included a partial easing of the regulations (rising the EUR 5,000 limit to EUR 15,000) in its 2016 election program.