Nova Gorica, 24 July (STA) - While Slovenians used to rush to Italian shops near the border in the past, things seem to be turning around, as figures suggest more and more Italians are shopping in Slovenian malls.
Nearly half of the customers in the major Slovenian shopping centres near the Italian border are Italians, representatives of shops in the Goriško area have told the STA.
The Italians are buying practically everything from food to clothes, cosmetics, flowers, cigarettes and petrol. Many buyers also stop to have a meal in the restaurants in the shopping centres.
"It is hard to give an objective estimate about which products they tend to buy. In Sežana, for example, Italians are buying products considered to be of a better quality than in Italy, such as meat, meat products and dairy," Andrej Šik of the Slovenian Regional Economic Union (SDGZ) from Trieste has told the STA.
He added that a few years ago, "it was unthinkable for an Italian to buy clothes and shoes in Slovenia, but now the number of Italian customers in the Koper and Sežana areas is increasing".
Meanwhile, commenting on the habits of Slovenian shoppers in Italy, Mirjam Božič of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry said they were "buying cocoa spreads, diapers, certain types of cheese, fresh pasta, and coffee, because these products are considered to be of a better quality than in Slovenia".
Finally, while trends regarding what to buy on which side of the border keep changing, the habit of buying cigarettes and petrol in Slovenia seems firmly anchored, as prices are considerably lower in Slovenia.