Slovakia: glass industry profits down in 2002

Glass companies in Slovakia reported a 19.7% year-on-year aggregate fall in gross profit over 2002 to SKK 1.381 billion. At the same time, aggregate sales in the glass making sector rose 7.4% to SKK 1…

Glass companies in Slovakia reported a 19.7% year-on-year aggregate fall in gross profit over 2002 to SKK 1.381 billion. At the same time, aggregate sales in the glass making sector rose 7.4% to SKK 10.287 billion. Aggregate revenues of glass manufacturing companies grew by 7.2% to SKK 12.191 billion and costs rose 12% to SKK 10.810 billion. Skloplast, Rona Crystal, Slovglass and Izomat were among companies reporting the highest export sales in 2002, due mainly to new production capacities and export contracts, said Jan Mudry, general secretary of the Slovak Glass Industry Association (ZSP). He added that the sector was hit by the weaking of the US dollar as over 72% of its exports are paid for in this currency. Export sales increased 11.7% to SKK 7.438 billion. Investments in the sector fell 67.9% to SKK 777 million. Mr. Mudry also highlighted rises in energy prices, wages demands and social security as posing a challenge to the glass industry as a whole. As of 31 December 2002 the sector employed 6,563, a 1.8% year-on-year decrease. The average monthly wage rose by SKK 1,309 year-on-year to SKK 16,096. “From 2003 companies in the sector will prepare further significant investments and modernization in all glass manufacturing branches, mainly in the production of glass fiber, glassware and packaging glass,” added Mr. Mudry. The Slovak Glass Industry Association was founded in December 1992 and has 25 associates.