The Vatican recognised San Marino’s independence in 1631, confirming its status as a sovereign state. San Marino’s economy is founded on tourism, finance and services. San Marino is not a member of the European Union. However, the Republic uses the euro with the blessing of the Council of the European Union. San Marino’s economy was traditionally founded on quarrying, agriculture, sheep farming. Grains, grapes and fruit are still grown commercially. The main agricultural products are wine and cheese.
San Marino is the world’s oldest still-existing republic, founded way back in 301AD. How has such a tiny country been able to resist invasion and retain independence for 1700 years? The answer lies at the top of a mountain…
What happened with the Railway infrastructure? (Brittish)
The Most Serene Republic of San Marino is an enclaved nation surrounded entirely by Italy. The fifth smallest country on earth, San Marino has a land area of 61 km2 and a population of around 33,000. The Republic is named for its founder, Saint Marinus, who, in 301 AD, left his home in Croatia and built a church in what is now the city of San Marino.
Today San Marino’s primary industries include banking, electronics, and ceramics. Tourism accounts for around 22% of GDP. FDI plays an important role in the Sammarinese economy. Foreign investors are drawn to San Marino’s low corporate and income tax rates, efficient banking system and openness to the free market. In recent years, the country has made it easier for local firms to employ foreign workers and has signed an agreement with the European Union to exchange tax information – following criticism that the Republic was operating as a tax haven.
Founded in 1994, HLB San Marino provide a range of professional to those seeking to invest in the Most Serene Republic.
San Marino is the name of the capital city, and it sits atop Mount Titano, 2,480ft (756 meters) above sea level. The historic center is a Unesco World Heritage Site. There are several other cities and towns dotting the mountainside where most people live. San Marino lays claim to the titles of oldest constitutional republic and oldest surviving sovereign state.
Legend says that San Marino was founded in the year 301 CE by Saint Marinus, a stonemason who came from the island of Arba which was part of the Roman Empire (today known as the island of Rab in modern-day Croatia).
He had been working on the city walls in Rimini (also part of the Roman Empire) and preaching the Christian gospel to slaves. At the time the Roman Empire was still Pagan, and fearing persecution he fled to nearby Monte Titano where he built a chapel and lived as a hermit. As his reputation grew, others started to follow him to the mountain until finally the owner of Mount Titano decided to gift the land to him. Marinus was canonized by the church and his feast day is September 3, the date in 301 on which he founded San Marino. In memory of Marinus, the area was named the Land of San Marino, then the Community of San Marino, and finally the Republic of San Marino.
There is no president or prime minister. Instead, the head of state is known as the Captain Regent. Two Captain Regents serve at the same time for terms of six months. The two Captain Regents are usually from different parties and are voted by San Marino’s Grand and General Council.
The 60 members of the Grand and General Council (the most powerful council) are elected by the people of San Marino to five-year terms. In addition to voting for the Captain Regents, they also elect the Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Secretary of Interior and Secretary of Treasury to the Grand Council (10 total members).
Abraham Lincoln expressed his admiration for San Marino in a letter to a Captains Regent in 1861, saying, “Although your dominion is small, nevertheless your State is one of the most honoured throughout history…” In response, they granted him citizenship. Lincoln has been honored on San Marino postage stamps three times.
The VAT (value-added tax) in Italy is 20%. There is no VAT in San Marino, and there are hundreds of shops full of tax-free merchandise.
San Marino republic
The other smaller countries in Europe
Vatican City, the planet’s smallest country, boasts the its biggest church. The fairy-tale princedom of Monaco lures high rollers with its fancy casino and glamorous views. Italy’s last independent hill town, San Marino, still looks formidable, as does the castle-guarded principality of Liechtenstein. And amid the rugged beauty of the Pyrenees, tiny Andorra draws shoppers and hikers alike.