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Maribor Wooing Foreign Investors

Maribor, 31 January (STA) - Slovenia's second largest city Maribor held a presentation for diplomats Friday as it strives to attract foreign investors to create much needed jobs.

"It is important diplomats have Maribor and Podravje region in mind, knowing that they can turn to us and that we are looking for opportunities," Mayor Andrej Fištravec said.

Access to markets, a highly educated workforce and a long industrial tradition were highlighted as the city's main advantages.

Fištravec noted that there was already a lot of industrial infrastructure in place, including land and buildings. "We're not building industry from scratch, it's already here."

The mayor's adviser, Marko Kovačič, noted that nine investment projects with Chinese partners were ongoing, as well as two with partners from Russia and three each with investors from the Gulf and the EU.

"We see our city as Russia's and China's gateway to Europe," he noted, adding that investors were eligible for special tax breaks under a scheme to promote growth in the underdeveloped region.

The meeting was organised by the city in conjunction with the Foreign Ministry and the local chamber of commerce.

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