Before the dissolution of Yugoslavia, Slovenia was the
richest and most industrialized of all the republics of the
Union. With only eight percent of Yugoslavia's total
population, the republic accounted for 17 percent of gross
domestic product (GDP) and 30 percent of exports to Western
Europe. In the first period after independence, the country
experienced a short-term economic decline. After a few years
of economic decline and high unemployment, economic growth
increased, while unemployment fell. As the first of the new
EU countries, Slovenia joined the Eurozone in 2007.
Of the service industries, finance (banking, insurance)
and tourism are particularly important sources of income for
Since 2014, Slovenia has experienced strong growth. GDP
increased by 2.3 per cent in 2015, 3.1 per cent in 2016 and
4.0 per cent in 2017. GDP per capita in 2017 amounted to USD
34,100. Unemployment in 2017 was 6.8 per cent and inflation
at 1.6 per cent.
COUNTRYAAH, Slovenia has an excellent infrastructure and a
Agriculture and forestry
The total agricultural area constitutes 22.8 per cent of
the land. More than half of the agricultural land is used as
pasture. Among other things, it is grown maize, wheat, sugar
beets, potatoes, cabbage and fruit (apples and pears, as
well as grapes for wine production). Cattle are especially
kept for milk and meat production, poultry and pigs, as well
as some sheep. In 2016, agriculture's contribution to GDP
was 2.3 per cent
62.3 per cent of the country is covered by forests, and
forestry has traditionally been an important industry. Most
of the harvest goes to timber and pulp.
The farming of fish, mainly trout and carp, has increased
in recent years. In 2016, production was 1612 tonnes. Deep
sea fishing, on the other hand, is negligible. According to
Eurostats, only 200 tonnes were fished in 2015.
In 2015, the coal mine at Velenje, 58 km northeast of the
capital Ljubljana, produced 3.2 million tonnes of coal. The
mining business employs 1300 people, and it is planned to
continue mining until 2054. In addition, lead and zinc are
recovered, as well as smaller amounts of salt, oil and
natural gas. Slovenia has smaller deposits of uranium and
31.9 per cent of the country's energy consumption is
covered by hydropower. Slovenia has one nuclear power plant
in Krsk, which was built in 1983 to meet energy needs in
both Slovenia and Croatia. By a 1995 agreement, ownership of
the power plant was shared equally between the two
countries. This power plant covers 34.4 per cent of
Slovenia's energy needs, while coal accounts for 31.8 per
cent. Slovenia imports both oil and gas.
The largest industrial branches are the metal and
workshop industries, which are located in Ljubljana and
Celje, among others. There is considerable electronic
industry in Ljubljana, and the textile industry in Maribor
and Kranj. The heavy industry is particularly located in
Ljubljana and Jesenice. Otherwise, chemicals, foodstuffs,
wood-based products (including paper), footwear, motor
vehicles etc. are produced.
Industrial production, which in 2017 contributed 32 per
cent of the country's gross domestic product, grew by 2.5
per cent this year. 31.7 per cent of the country's working
population was then employed in the industry.
Slovenia exports machinery and transport equipment, in
particular electrical appliances, office machines, road
machinery and parts, clothing and accessories and chemicals.
The main import goods are machinery and transport equipment,
chemicals and various factory products.
In 2017, total exports amounted to USD 30.23 billion,
while imports were USD 28.7 billion.
In 2016, Slovenia's five main export markets were as
follows: Germany (19.3 per cent), Italy (10.4 per cent),
Austria (7.5 per cent), Croatia (7.3 per cent) and Hungary
(4.4 per cent). The five most important markets for
Slovenian imports were: Germany (16.8 per cent), Italy (13.5
per cent), Austria (9.9 per cent), Croatia (5.5 per cent)
and China (4.8 per cent).
Transport and Communications
Slovenia's geographical location means that the country
is a natural transit country for road and rail traffic
between northern and southern Europe, and there are good
connections especially in the northwest-southeast direction.
There are a total of 38 985 km of roads. The railway network
is at 1229 km. Koper is the country's most important port
city. In 2016, 22 million tonnes of goods were loaded/
unloaded at the port, representing a six per cent increase
over 2015. The port of Koper is a duty-free zone. Other
important ports are Portorož and Izola. There is some
transport on the river Drava, which is a bee to the Danube.