BERLIN Slovakia is shifting strategy to attract more R&D operations as the country prepares to adopt the euro currency.
Most of Slovakia's investments to date have been in manufacturing, particularly the automotive and display sectors. Many car manufacturers and suppliers have set up in the country, as well as electronics companies such as Samsung and Sony, which run large display manufacturing plants.
"We know that in a few years we won't be as attractive for manufacturing as Romania or Bulgaria," said Jana Murínova, SARIO spokeswoman.
To promote R&D investment, the Slovak Investment and Trade Development Agency (SARIO), has joined with the Slovak R&D Agency (APVV), the body that allocates funding to support R&D activities.
APVV employs 220 academics and business specialists in several fields who can provide specific information about Slovakia's research capabilities. SARIO previously had no expertise to offer investors considering R&D operations, Murínova said.
The five key targeted sectors are automotive, optoelectronics, ICT, renewable energy and nuclear power.
"The industrial base in the [targeted] sectors is already developed," said Miroslav Kucera, strategy director for SARIO. "We are looking at this from the point of view of commercial feasibility."