During the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Trieste became a leading European city in economy, trade and commerce, and was the fourth largest and most important centre in the Empire, after Vienna, Budapest and Prague. The economy of Trieste, however, fell into a small decline after the city's annexation to Italy after World War I. But Fascist Italy promoted a huge development of Trieste in the 1930s, with new manufacturing activities related even to naval and armament industries (like the famous "Cantieri Aeronautici Navali Triestini (CANT)"). Allied bombings during World War II destroyed the industrial section of the city (mainly the shipyards).
As a consequence, Trieste was a mainly peripheral city during the Cold War. However, since the 1970s, Trieste has had a huge economic boom, thanks to a significant commercial shipping business to the container terminal, steel works and an oil terminal which feeds the Transalpine Pipeline to Austria and Southern Germany. Trieste is also Italy's and Mediterranean's (and one of Europe's) greatest coffee ports, as the city supplies more than 40% of Italy's coffee. Many coffee brands were founded and are headquartered in the city. Currently, Trieste is one of Europe's most important ports and centres for trade and transport, with Trieste being part of the "Corridor 5" plan, to create a bigger transport connection between Western and Eastern European countries. Therefore, the economy depends largely on the Port of Trieste and on trade with its neighbouring regions.
Trieste is a lively and cosmopolitan city, with more than 7.7% of its population being from abroad, and it is rebuilding some of its former cultural, economic and political influence. The city is a major centre in the EU for trade, politics, culture, shipbuilding, education, transport and commerce. The city is part of the Corridor 5, which aims at ensuring a bigger transport connection between countries in Western Europe and Eastern European nations, such as