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Slovenia Weekly

The new Slovenian government embarking on an ambitious project of economic consolidation

31.10.2014

Editorial

Reform measures – a marathon, not a sprint. Photo: STA
Today is Reformation Day in Slovenia, a national holiday that is closely connected to the leading personality of the Slovenian protestant movement, Primož Trubar, author of the first book to be published in Slovene (Cathecismus, 1550), whose work created a strong foundation for Slovenian national confidence and self-awareness. Consequently, Slovenia has been part of Europe's cultural and spiritual life for centuries. In the light of current social changes, Slovenia should apply the spirit of the protestant movement to other areas of emancipation in order to restore its position among the developed European economic areas and make it an equal partner not only through the power of words, but also actions.

With regard to concrete measures, the government has unanimously agreed to continue structural reforms in order to improve competitiveness, and further implement measures aimed at financial consolidation. Reform measures in the EU and Slovenia were also the focus of the discussions between the Slovenian PM Miro Cerar and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel. According to Mrs Merkel, the Slovenian government is embarking on an ambitious project of economic consolidation. It will tackle problems in dialogue with unions, investors and employers, while promoting a culture of shared responsibility, which has been welcomed by Berlin. Mr Cerar said that his cabinet’s main task was to ensure political stability and thereby a predictable and stable economic environment. The new government will seek to further open Slovenia to foreign investors, eliminate administrative obstacles and promote infrastructure and other projects, including in cooperation with Germany and other European countries.

While most economic indicators continue to improve, marathon stamina and (financial) sustainability are needed in order to achieve good results, which we have promised both to ourselves and our European partners. According to the PM, Miro Cerar, it is very important that the budget has been drawn up to keep the deficit below 3 per cent next year.

Slovenia can count on Germany in consolidation efforts

German Chancellor Merkel and PM Cerar discuss possibilities of further economic cooperation. Photo: STA
The first foreign trip of the Slovenian PM, Miro Cerar, was to Slovenia's biggest and the most significant economic partner, Germany. With his host, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, he discussed bilateral relations, relevant policies, the situation in the EU, Slovenia and the region. They focused on budgetary consolidation, privatisation in Slovenia and economic conditions.

According to the German Chancellor, the new Slovenian government has embarked on an ambitious project of economic consolidation, where problems will be addressed inclusively, i.e. in dialogue with unions, investors and employers, while they will promote a culture of shared responsibility, which has been welcomed by Berlin. Mrs Merkel stressed that the government could count on the support of the German government in the process. Mrs Merkel also said that the Slovenian government had an ambitious privatisation agenda in which German companies have expressed interest.

Mr Cerar said that his cabinet’s main task was to ensure political stability and thereby a predictable and stable economic environment. Crucial challenges were fostering growth, where indicators have already been favourable, and financial consolidation, which would bring the budget deficit below 3 per cent of GDP in 2015.

The new government will seek to further open Slovenia to foreign investors, eliminate administrative obstacles and promote infrastructure and other projects, including in cooperation with Germany and other European countries. According to the Slovenian PM, Slovenia welcome Germany’s support for investments in different sectors, such as the construction of the second railway line inland from the Port of Koper.

The PM was accompanied by the finance minister, Dušan Mramor, who met his German counterpart, Wolfgang Schäuble, to discuss Slovenia's plans to boost growth, fiscal consolidation and European economic policy in the crisis period. more...

Slovenia has been part of Europe's cultural and spiritual life for centuries

Reformation Day on 31 October has been a national holiday in Slovenia since 1992. The Reformation movement had a strong influence on the cultural and spiritual evolution of Slovenes. In addition to Cathecismus in 1550, the first book to be published in Slovene, Primož Trubar (1508–1586), who standardised Slovene also wrote Abecedarium. The Reformation also produced a Slovene grammar (Adam Bohorič, Articae horulae), and a translation of the Bible by Jurij Dalmatin in 1584. The Slovenes thus became the 12th nation in the world with a complete Bible in their own language. more...

Measures to fill the capital hole are already being implemented

The recent financial review of 130 major banks in the euro area has shown that 25 European banks failed the stress tests conducted by the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Banking Agency (EBA). These include Slovenia’s NLB and NKBM, whose capital shortfall in 2016 under an adverse scenario would be 34 and 31 million euros, respectively. The banks have already informed the ECB that they would cover the shortfall with retained earnings from this year. more...

The Government approves the revised budget for 2014

In accordance with the forecasts, the Government approved the revised budget for this year, which estimates a deficit of 3.4 per cent of GDP. As finance minister Dušan Mramor announced in October, the deficit will rise by 176 million euros from 3.2 to 3.4 per cent of GDP. Government remains committed to the main fiscal target of a general government deficit below 3 per cent of GDP in 2015, at 2.8 per cent (according to ESA methodology). more...

Sumida Slovenija, Hofer, Elrad International and Količevo Karton are the best foreign investors in Slovenia in 2014

SPIRIT Slovenija public agency has awarded prizes for the best foreign investors. The Invest Slovenia FDI Award, now in its ninth year, went to Sumida Slovenija, Hofer trgovina, Elrad International and Količevo Karton. The final selection included companies with over 50 employees that operate at a profit, have a high credit rating, added value of at least 35,000 euros per employee and regularly pay taxes. more...

The European Commission confirms Slovenia's partnership agreement

The European Commission has confirmed a partnership agreement with Slovenia, a key document detailing the strategy for using European structural and investment funds in the current financial period. This ends the internsive coordination between Slovenia, Brussels and other partners, giving Slovenia access to a total of 4.118 billion euros European funds. The agreement creates the framework for disbursing 3.07 billion euros of cohesion policy funds over 2014-2020, 837.8 million euros for rural development and 24.8 million euros for fisheries and the maritime sector. more...

The Albanian President visits Slovenia to strengthen economic cooperation

On Tuesday, the President of Slovenia, Borut Pahor, received the President of Albania, Bujar Nishani, on an official visit. The visit was the first opportunity to continue meetings at the highest political level and to strengthen bilateral cooperation and Albania’s integration into the EU. more...



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