The Slovak Republic is a country, the state sovereignty of which was reestablished on January the 1st 1993. On that day Czechoslovakia was split into two countries and the independent SR came into being. Slovakia is a state situated in the interior of Central Europe. We often say that it lies right in the heart of Europe. With it`s size of 49036 km² it does not rank among big countries.
Our republic has 5 neighbours. In the south it borders upon Hungary, in the west upon Czech Republic and Austria, in the north it has a border with Poland and it has it`s shortest border with the Ukraine in the east.
The surface of S is prenominantly mountainous and it is a part of the Tertiary Carpathian System. The territory of S is formed by the vault of the West Carpathian Mountains, which cover it`s significant part. A smaller part of Eastern S is formed by the East Carpathian Mountains, which reach as far as the Trans – Carpathian Ukraine. The Western and Eastern Carpathian Mountains are surrounded with the three plains. In the west it is the Záhorská plain, in the south Supdanube plain and in the south – eastern part of S it is the Eastern Slovakian plain.
We can see the Outer West Carpathian Mountains just out in the north – western part of the state – these are mostly the Small Carpathian Mountains, the White Carpathian Mountains, the Javorníky Mountains and the highest section – the Orava Beskydy Mountains. Towards the east continue the Inner West Carpathian Mountains – the Tatras being ranked among them (with the peak of Gerlach 2655 m high), together with the Low Tatras (Ďumbier 2043 m), the Small Fatra Mountains (Big Krivaň Mountains 1709 m), the Big Fatra Mountains and the Slovak Red (Ore) Mountains. In the East Carpathian Mountains (Bukovské Hills, Vihorlat Mountains) penetrated to the Slovak territory.
The Slovak climate is mild, it passes between the oceanic and continental climate. The most typical feature of the Slovak climate is alteration of 4 seasons. The largest Slovak river, though a very short one, is the Danube, which comes to S from Austria. The longest river of S is the Váh (378 km long). The largest number of Slovakian lakes are of glacier origin. They can be found mostly in the Tatras – the largest and at the same time the deepest of them is the Great Hincer Mountain Lake.
Although many new manmade waterdams and reservoirs of great economic importance which at the same time serve as places for recreation have been built up in S.
The well – known are river dams: Orava waterdam, Zemplín dam, Liptov dam and Big Domaša dam. A set of water works called Gabčíkovo upon the Danube becomes well – known and gradually more and more atractive for South S and foreign tourists.
The territory of S is very rich in mineral springs many of which are termal springs. Famous spas are opened in the towns Piešťany, Trenčianske and Turčianske Teplice, Bardejov, asl.
S is populated by more than 5,4 million inhabitants. The most densely inhabited parts of S are it’s hollows and plains. The strongest nationality are the Slovaks, who form 85,7 % of all inhabitants. In S live also minorities such as Hungarians, Romanians, Czechs, Ruthenians, Ukrainians, Germas, asl. The predominant religion is the Roman – Catholic religion (60 %), followed by the Protestant religion (8.4 %) and the Greek - Catholic religion (3 %).
Administrative division of the country distinguishes 8 regions: Bratislava, Trnava, Trenčín, Nitra, Žilina, Banská Bystrica, Košice, Prešov and 79 districts. The largest town of the country and at the same time it‘s capital is Bratislava with 449000 inhabitants. Other large cities are Košice, Nitra, Prešov, Banská Bystrica, Žilina.
The animal production in agriculture prevails over vegetable production. The most widespread is the production of pigs,. . . and sheep. In the vegetable production the preference is mainly given to growing corn (wheat and barley), maize, foodstuffs, sugar – beet, fruit.
S is although rich in such natural resources as brown coal, iron ore, lead, zine, copper. The main industruies are ingineering, chemical and rubber industry, metal and food industry.
The Slovak territory has been settled very early, since the primeval ages. In the ancient ages the Celtic and Dacian tribes settled down in this area. The Germanic tribes came to the territory of S in the 1st century and later in the 6th century the Slavic tribes started to settle down a part of S belonged to the Samo Empire – 7th century (623 - 658).
At the beggining of the 8th century the Nitra Principality came into being in the South – western S, which was later connected to the Great Moravia Empire. Gradually the Slovak territory started to be governed by the Magyars and from 11th century until 1918 it became part of the Hungarian Kingdom. In 1918 Czechoslovakia was formed. After the Munich agreement in 1938 S was garanted an autonomy within Czechoslovakia and lost it’s southern parts. On the 14th of March 1939 an independent SR was declared in S.
The course of the war and growing dissatisfaction led to the Slovak national uprising. In 1945 S became a part of Czechoslovakia again. The growing resistance against the comunist dictatorship in Czechoslovakia culminated in the Velvet revolution in 1989. The Czech and Slovak federative republic started a new stage of it’s development.
But various economic, social and national problems appeared when led to the peaceful split of the country of C and S and resulted in formation of the independent C and S R.
The republic is headed by the President. The executive power is in the names of the President, the Prime Minister and the government. A one – chamber national court of the SR has the legislative power in the country. It has 150 members and the period of office is 4 years.