Industrial production is located mainly in the west part of Slovakia which is formed by Bratislava, Trnava, Trenčín and Nitra Self-governing Regions. These western regions have a 60% share of Slovakia’s total GDP (2016). Central Slovakia is formed by Žilina and Banská Bystrica Self-governing Regions, with a share of 20%, and the Eastern part, formed by Prešov and Košice Self-governing Regions, with a 20% share of total GDP. The highway connection between the west and the east of Slovakia is still not finished, which is a big handicap – mainly for Prešov and Košice regions. It is to be finished by about 2020.
The chemical industry is also concentrated mainly in the western part of Slovakia where oil refinery, production of primary plastics, rubber products (tyres), fertilizers, coatings, pharmaceuticals, plastic products are located. Production mainly focuses on of man-made fibres, plastic foils and other chemical products in central and eastern Slovakia. Many small- and medium-sized companies are geared to the production of rubber, plastic and other products for the automotive industry. There are three big car factories: Volkswagen, Peugeot-Citroen and KIA, located in the western part of Slovakia. A total number of over 1,3 million cars manufactured in 2016, the equivalent of 191 units per 1 000 inhabitants, the most of any country in the world. A new plant of Jaguar Land Rover Company is under construction near the town of Nitra.
As far as the accessibility of universities and research technology organisations is concerned, there are three universities important for the industry: Comenius University and Slovak University of Technology both located in Bratislava, and the University of Technology in Košice in eastern Slovakia. There are four private R&D Institutes geared mainly to the chemical sector: R&D of chemical technology, petrochemicals, plastics, and man-made fibres. There is good co-operation between specialised faculties of the universities, R&D institutes and the Slovak Academy of Science, a state institution. Lack of state support for applied R&D is a significant issue for the Slovak chemical industry. In 2016 there were €641 million of financial means for the whole R&D in Slovakia, of which €263 million from state and public funds, €296 million from the private sector, which in total represented 0.79% of the Slovak GDP. At the beginning of 2013 the government prepared the material Strategy of Research, Development and Innovations in the Slovak Republic till the Year 2020. ZCHFP SR and its members very actively participated in the preparation of the material.