Economic Freedom in Slovakia Worsened in 2010 due to Corruption

The economic freedom in Slovakia worsened last year, the 2011 Index of Economic Freedom released by the Heritage Foundation says. Slovakia dropped two spots from last year while its overall score has decreased by 0.2 point, mainly as a result of declines in freedom from corruption and property rights. A year ago the country gained 0.3 points.

The actual Slovakia’s economic freedom score is 69.5, making its economy the 37th freest in the world and 20th out of 43 countries in the Europe region.

The Heritage Foundation measured ten components of economic freedom, assigning a grade in each using a scale from 0 to 100, where 100 represents the maximum freedom. The ten component scores are then averaged to give an overall economic freedom score for each country.

The best increase +5 points Slovakia achieved in the freedom of investments, reaching 75.0 points. Foreign and domestic investments are not screened and treated equally under the law. Reforms have improved the transparency of investment rules, but bureaucratic efficiency still could be much better. Dispute resolution through the judicial system can be slow, and corruption is a problem.

The corruption in Slovakia is perceived as the biggest problem. In the freedom from corruption Slovakia lost 5 points and worsened to 45.0 points. The corruption especially affects health care, the judiciary, and education.

The score related to the protection of private property rights dropped 5 points as well, to 50 points. The judiciary is independent and comparatively effective, although decisions can take years and corruption remains significant.

SK Today / using The 2011 Index of Economic Freedom, The Heritage Foundation.

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