Establishing a Good Alliance
Slovenia was a former member of Yugoslavia but had declared itself independent from the republic in 1991. Since then, the US had formed a very strong bond with the country on several issues especially on cooperative relations. They have founded the relationship on the grounds of establishing bilateral investment ties as well as promotion of regional security. As an introduction, the US was said to be one of the supporters of Slovenia's efforts to enter the NATO and other European-Atlantic institutions.
Economically, Slovenia was said to be very successful. This was due to three reasons which include: (1) liberal trade; (2) following the rule of law; and (3) a very fulfilling enterprise. The success was not seen to be extraordinary though but for a country which is very young in terms of the number of years of independence, this was indeed remarkable. In fact, it was said to be the most successful of all Yugoslavian republics which had dissolved from the nation. Its strong economic relations with other nations were founded on its desire to be recognized in world business.
After its dissolution from Yugoslavia, it had embraced Western influence specifically that coming from the United States. It became a market economy which had welcomed change by means of complying with bilateral and free trade agreements. In 1996, it was said to join the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) and was also a founding member of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
To date, Slovenia is regarded as one of the strongest contenders in Central and Eastern Europe in terms of economic stability. Its work force was one of the core reasons why the country is enjoying a fair stature in international business. Owe it also to its political and economical institutions. Slovenia took things one step at a time to make sure that all issues have passed through a consensus before coming up with the final rules for the land and for other nations which benefits from its trade.
Its trade relations with the US were seen to be effective in implementing reform in the country. Even before its independence, Slovenia was seen to have a communication with US. In the 1970's, the latter established an American library and cultural center in one for the cities of Slovenia known as Ljubljana.
Major Exports and Imports between the US and Slovenia
The main agricultural products in Slovenia are wheat, corn, fruits and wine. Poultry, beef, pork and milk also form part of the sector. Its primary exports to other countries are comprised of machinery, transportation equipment, chemical products and manufactured articles. Imports of Slovenia from other nations include machinery, transportation equipment, manufactured articles, mineral fuels and lubricants.
Its trade with the US actually accounts for 1.5% market share. From January to September 2008, exports from US to Slovenia were already $217.30 million while the imports from the latter to the former recorded a total of $356.40 million. This was according to the statistics presented by the US Census Bureau. In 2007, the following information was also gathered:
Treaties and Other Programs between the US and Slovenia
- Slovenian Exports to US. The total exports of Slovenia to the United States for 2007 were recorded at $488.29 million. Of this total amount, $116.92 million which is equivalent to 23.94% was given to medicinal, dental and pharmaceutical preparations. Other prominent products which paved their way to the top of the charts were: furniture, household items and baskets; generators, transformers and accessories; semifinished iron and steel mill products; household and kitchen appliances; photo and service industry, machinery and tools; bauxite and aluminum; electric apparatus and parts; glassware, porcelain and chinaware; and engines and engine parts. Engines and engine parts were sold at a total of $11.10 million or 2.27% for the total exports from Lithuania to US in 2007.
- Slovenian Imports from US. For 2007, the total imports from US entering the Slovenian market were sold at $296.96. Out of this total, primary synthetic rubber topped the list with a very humble income of $31.21 million or a mere 10.51%. This simply means that the products were given equal endeavors to be traded in the market. Completing the list were: telecommunications equipment; inorganic chemicals; medicinal equipment; generators and accessories; metallurgical grade coal; minimum value shipments; industrial engines; other industrial machines and industrial rubber products. The last product was sold for a total of $8.91 which is 3% for 2007's sales mark.
- Fastest-Growing US Exports to Slovenia. The sales of goods from the US entering Slovenia were said to be improving through the years. In fact, topping the list was aluminum and alumina which despite a small amount of $147 thousand had gained an increase of 4,767% compared to 2006's sales. Other remarkable goods were: civilian aircraft engines; vegetables; other manufactured agricultural products; and chemicals such as fertilizers. The last product on the top five was sold for a total of $71 thousand which is clearly far better off than its sales in 2006 by 1,540%.
- Fastest-Growing US Imports from Slovenia. For the products from Slovenia which invades the US market, it was seen that a lot of sales changes were very outstanding. As evidence to this, textile, sewing and leather working machinery were sold for an increase of 10,250% from 2006 or an equivalent amount of $205 thousand. Other products worthy of praise were: computers; pulp and paper machinery; marine engines and parts; and cotton cloth and fabrics, thread and cordage. The last items made for themselves a sales record of $859 thousand which is 859% better than in 2006.
Slovenia's trade relations with the US were supported by various treaties and a handful of economic reform programs. One of the most famous programs between these two nations is called the SEED which stands for Support for Eastern European Democracy. Under the said act, the US was said to provide support from competitiveness in business and banking and pension transformation to debt restructuring and policies on competition. Because of the perseverance of this independent nation, Slovenia was said to have graduated from the program with flying colors.
Another pertinent pact signed between the two nations is the so-called Slovenia Commercial Relations Treaty. This treaty is non-exclusive to Slovenia as there are other nations involved. It was signed in October 14, 1881 at Serbia and was modified in October 1946. Other nations covered aside from Slovenia and Serbia are Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia and Montenegro. Just like other commercial relations treaty, this focused on all aspects of economic trade including friendship and navigation.
Trade Barriers between the Two Nations
Just like any other developed and developing country, Slovenia and US underwent some rough times. Agricultural issues as well as tariff considerations went out of hand. Access to some goods faltered a bit especially that rules were not yet established very well on Slovenian grounds. Much more to this effect, there is a requirement to adapt centralization where international standards could be met.
Being a European member nation, Slovenia was squeezed in the middle of the EU and US conflicts. Several discussions have been made but did not take effect specially that there was no meeting of the minds and no amicable settlement was seen to be at hand. Tariffs and other legal matters could only be addressed until there is a cooperation that will bind the results together.
There was a promise however, to take all the proper courses of action regarding the key aspects of trade. This was a measure to at least eliminate the risks involved in the economy as well as regain the confidence of foreign investors. Some of the methods to be adapted include improvement of liquidity management, intensifying prudence, encouraging transparency and promoting international cooperation.
The Hope that the Future Will Bring
The success of Slovenia in attaining outright transformation in its economy was basically because there were nations who have helped it in its struggle for growth and development. The United States is evidently one of the strongest forces that did not leave it lagging behind. Much more to the delight of Slovenia, the US has continued to foster ties for the better end of the country.
Being submerged between the wars of the EU and US is normal for any European-member nation. Since Slovenia has to depend upon the rules established by its mother nation, there is no doubt some loopholes that could be seen in between. The loopholes are however repairable especially with the desire of the EU and US to close the wars of trade in between them.
Slovenia is not said to be totally reliant upon its membership in the EU. After its transformation from a slave to Yugoslavia, it has moved for its right to independence. No longer will it take the dictates of the ruling countries but will see to it that the consent of the public will be undertaken. All the progress it had attained was dependent upon its own will by considering the choices made by its people. Forming a bond with US is part of its stepping stone and it will definitely continue in the years to come.
US-Slovenia Trade References