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The government approves the plan to relocate 567 persons from Italy and Greece

The government approves the plan to relocate 567 persons from Italy and Greece and resettle 20 from third countries.

At today’s session, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia approved a plan to relocate 567 people from Italy and Greece and resettle 20 persons from third countries. The final number of people will probably be higher, depending on the current migration situation and the final agreement on the number of relocations. Within the resettlement project, Slovenia will receive persons from countries where at least 75 per cent of requests for international protection have been approved at the EU level. Such countries are Syria, Eritrea, Iraq, Central African Republic, Swaziland, Yemen and Bahrain, so Slovenia will take in asylum seekers from these countries. With regard to resettlement, the priority regions defined at the EU level are North Africa, Middle East and the countries of the African Horn or regions with an established European Regional Protection Programme. Considering all of the above, Slovenia will receive people from Syria for permanent resettlement.

Slovenia will begin to relocate people in April this year. In regular intervals (at least every three months) it will communicate to Italy or Greece the number of people that can be relocated quickly. All 20 people that are to be resettled will arrive this year.

Relocation from Italy and Greece
After arriving in Slovenia, those being resettled will be accommodated in asylum centres, where they will receive all due care while undergoing international protection procedures. Asylum seekers will be able to follow the procedure in a language they understand, receive basic care, free legal assistance, urgent medical treatment, education and pocket money and will have the right to work and be employed. They can also stay at a private address while their request is being processed. After being granted international protection, they will be accommodated in integration facilities and then in private homes, and will be entitled to financial support for private accommodation for two years after leaving the integration facility. In the first three months (introductory period) they will be included in an orientation programme (familiarising themselves with the lifestyle in Slovenia, Slovenia’s institutions, the basics of Slovenian, functional language and introduction to independent life), which will be carried out by an organisation selected via a public call for applications (the procedure is in the final stage). After the introductory period, they will be offered assistance in finding private accommodation, learning Slovenian, learning assistance and the assistance of an integration counsellor.

Slovenia grants refugee status to people residing in third countries who meet certain requirements. The decision-making procedure takes into account the recommendation prepared for each person by the official of the relevant authority or the Office of the High Commissioner in a third country from which the person will be resettled. After arriving in Slovenia, people with status granted in a third country will move to appropriate accommodation. Considering the relatively small number of people in the resettlement project, of which we have little experience, we have prepared a special integration project which seeks to ensure accommodation, an orientation programme and assistance with integration provided by an institution selected through a public call for applications.

At today’s session, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia adopted a strategic paper on the development of the information society: the Information Society Development Strategy to 2020 – DIGITAL SLOVENIA 2020. This framework strategy lays down Slovenia’s key strategic development goals in this area and combines the Next-Generation Broadband Network Development Plan to 2020 and the Cyber Security Strategy together into a unified strategic framework.

The strategy constitutes a commitment to accelerate the development of the digital society and capitalise on opportunities offered by communication technologies and the internet to produce wider economic and social benefits. It is intended to tackle the greatest obstacles to the digital society by accelerating the development of digital entrepreneurship, increasing the competitiveness of the ICT industry, ensuring general digitisation, establishing an appropriate digital infrastructure, improving cyber security and developing an inclusive information society. The strategy prioritises investments in the development of an innovative data-driven economy and the development and use of internet technologies, focusing in particular on research and development of the internet of things, big data technologies, cloud computing and mobile technologies. A Slovenian digital coalition is also planned which will bring together those involved in developing the digital economy and job creation in the digital industries.

The government has also adopted the Next-Generation Broadband Network Development Plan to 2020. In support of the development of the digital society and the use of opportunities offered by information communication technologies and the internet to secure lasting economic and social benefits, such as economic development, greater competitiveness, high-quality new jobs and the balanced development of rural and urban areas, the plan’s core strategic objective is to provide broadband internet access with a speed of at least 100 Mb/s to 96% of households and at least 30 Mb/s to the remaining 4% by 2020.

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