Timișoara (Romanian pronunciation: [timiˈʃo̯ara] ( listen); German: Temeswar, also formerly Temeschburg or Temeschwar, Hungarian: Temesvár, Hungarian pronunciation: [‘tɛmɛʃvaːr] ( listen), Serbian: Темишвар/Temišvar, Turkish: Temeşvar) is the capital city of Timiș County, in western Romania. One of the largest Romanian cities, with a population of 303,708 inhabitants (the third most populous city in the country, as of 2011), and considered the informal capital city of the historical region of Banat, Timișoara is the main social, economic and cultural center in the western part of Romania.
As of 2011 census data, Timișoara has a population of 303,708, while the proposed Timișoara metropolitan area would have a population of 365,777. Of this population, 86.79% were ethnic Romanians, while 5.12% were Hungarians, 1.37% Germans, 1.3%Serbs, 0.69% ethnic Roma, 0.18% Ukrainians, 0.17% Slovaks, 0.11% Jews and 0.76% others. 14.2% of the population are under 15 years of age, 4.0% are over 75. The Ukrainian community is currently growing, partly due to the presence of Ukrainian language educational facilities. In recent years, local investment by Italian companies has spurred the creation of an Italian community, even leading to calls for an Italian Cultural Center.
Timișoara was the first city in the country with international routes economic boom as the amount of foreign investment, especially in high-tech sectors, has risen. In terms of living standards, Timișoara ranks fourth nationwide. In an article in late 2005, French magazine L’Expansion called Timișoara Romania’s economic showcase,and referred to the increased number of foreign investments as a “second revolution”.
Apart from domestic local investment, there has been significant foreign investment from the European Union, particularly from Germany and Italy. Continental AG has produced tires since opening a plant in 2000. The Linde Group produces technical gases, and a part of the wiring moulds for BMW and Audi vehicles are produced by the company Dräxlmaier Group locally. Also, Swiss company FM Logistic, already present in Timiș County for Nestlé, P&G and in Bucharest for Cora, L’Oréal, Sanofi Aventis and Yves Rocher, and for companies like PROFI Rom Foods, BIC[disambiguation needed], Kraft Foods or SCA Packaging – offering them domestic transport services and international transport services for Bricostore, Arctic, Danone, Unilever or Contitech, the growth of FM Logistic in Romania and in Dudești through its 1st own warehouse in Romania (Dudeștii Noi gives FM the opportunity). Nestlé produces waffles here.
The USA company Flextronics maintains a workplace in the west of the city for the production of mobile telephony and government inspection department devices. In 2009, the company laid off 640 workers. The American company Procter & Gamble manufactures washing and cleaning agents in Timișoara. Smithfield Foods – the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer – has two subsidiaries in Timișoara and Timiș County: Smithfield Ferme and Smithfield Prod.