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Reconciling Institutional Actors of Economic Diplomacy: The Case of Slovakia


In the centre of this essay is a tension that under certain circumstances may appear between various state actors involved in economic diplomacy. In the case of the Slovak economic diplomacy both the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs and the Ministry of Economy are the main actors in external economic relations. The paper briefly describes the origins of the tension between them and the reconciliation process that took place in the 10 years since the last reform of Slovakia’s economic diplomacy. The crucial reconciling role of the Government’s advisory body, the Council on Export and Investment Promotion, co-chaired by the ministers of foreign affairs and economy, is explained within the presented descriptive case study in
bureaucratic politics. The article contributes to the conceptual discourse on economic diplomacy, while extending the theoretical and empirical knowledge of the subject with regard to the behavior of its main power actors econand the tensions between them.


economic diplomacy, foreign service, bureaucratic politics, Slovakia

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Author Biography

Marek Csabay

Marek Csabay is an Associate Professor at the Institute of International Business, Faculty of Economics and Business of the Pan-European University in Bratislava. He holds a Ph in international relations from the University of Economics in Bratislava. Currently he serves as Director of the Office of the State Secretary at the Ministry of Economy of the Slovak Republic and as the Chairman of the Governing Board of the Slovak Business Agency (SBA). Previously he worked as an economic diplomat of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic, senior state counselor at the Department of Bilateral Trade Cooperation of the Ministry of Economy, and adviser to Directors-General of government agencies SARIO and SBA. His research interests include economic diplo-macy, trade policy and business promotion.

Katerina Cséfalvayová

Katarína Cséfalvayová holds a PhD from the Faculty of International Relations at the University of Economics in Bratislava, where she served as Assistant Professor between 2012 and 2017, as well as Vice-Dean for international development. From 2016 to 2020, she has served as member of parliament at the National Council of Slovak Republic, where she chaired the Committee for Foreign Affairs and served as Vice-Chair of the Committee for European Affairs. She is the co-founder of Institute for Central Europe, a think-tank that she currently directs. She was awarded with the National Order of Merit by the French president Emmanuel Macron in 2021.