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Visit by Commissioner Hahn

Commissioner Hahn will be in Slovakia on 23 May to attend a high level event in the City of Bratislava on better use of EU Structural Funds for marginalised Roma.

What are the priorities of the region?

Bratislava Region is situated in south western Slovakia, sharing borders with neighbouring Austria in the West and Hungary in the South. The Danube, the second largest river in Europe, forms part of the natural borders with these two neighbouring countries.  The central location of the region makes it an important transport hub.

Bratislava Region is the smallest region in Slovakia, but also the most densely populated and economically prosperous.  GDP per capita in the region stands at 167% of the EU-27 average (2008 figures).  The unemployment rate in 2010 was 6%, compared to a national average of 14%.

Manufacturing plays an important role in the local economy, particularly the automotive sector which represents 30% of Slovak exports.  Other significant industrial activities concern chemicals, engineering, electronics and food-processing.  The service sector (mainly commerce, banking and insurance) is growing in importance.  The region also draws on tourism to develop its economy.  The Bratislava Region concentrates about half of the country's R&D potential.

What contributions does EU regional policy make?

The EU is due to invest about €457 million in the Bratislava Region during the period 2007-2013 programming period through the European Regional Development Fund

More then 70% of the funds will go to support R&D in the region, including improvement of the technical infrastructure and development of applied research projects in the region. Support will also be provided for projects that focus on innovation and technological transfers to SMEs and the region’s development of its information society.  Other funding priorities include regeneration of public spaces, education, employment and social inclusion.

Additional support will be made available through the EU's Cohesion Fund to improve transport infrastructure in the region, including the development of an intermodal transport centre and an integrated transport system in Bratislava.  The Cohesion Fund will also support the local environment, for example, by completion of the sewerage systems, waste management, flood protection, water management and monitoring.

The Bratislava Region is also involved in cross-border programmes and is responsible for the management of the INTERACT support programme for territorial cooperation.

Project examples

  • Biotherapies and bio-pharmaceuticals:  Bratislava's Comenius University and Slovak Academy of Sciences are receiving funding for a project that aims to complete the infrastructure for the research of bio-therapeutic methods, to provide clinical studies of key bio-therapeutic methods (larvotherapy, ichthyotherapy, apitherapy, hirudotherapy), to identify organisms which can be used for production of biopharmaceuticals, and to propose the methods for the production of biopharmaceuticals. The facility for testing and developing bio-therapeutic methods as well as the laboratory have been built and fully equipped in the first year of the project.
  • Alternative fuels:  The Industrial Institute of the Slovak Republic and the Welding Research Institute are carrying out research into the use of innovative materials for super-heater systems, which produce energy through the combustion of alternative fuels.  The project aims to improve knowledge in the field of tube production with gradient chemical composition.  It is hoped that these techniques can be exploited commercially following the conclusion of the project.
  • Bratislava flood protection:  EU funding has helped to improve protection against the risk of flooding from the Danube in Bratislava and western Slovakia.  This helps to ensure the security of 490,000 people, 2000 km2 of agricultural land and 383 km2 of urban areas.


Further information