A schedule of all the main events involving Slovenia this week can be found here
This summary is provided by the STA:
Iztok Purič stepping down as development and cohesion minister
LJUBLJANA - Iztok Purič is stepping down as the head of the Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy, the Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) announced, adding "the minister has decided to step down for personal reasons". In his letter of resignation, handed to PM Marjan Šarec today, Purič noted that during his stint, the Office had managed to fix the flawed IT system, which threatened to bring Slovenia's drawing of EU funds to a standstill. Purič was appointed in mid-December to replace his fellow party colleague Marko Bandelli, who had to leave due to a delay in producing a report on EU funds phasing and due to meddling in the local elections only after two months on the job. Šarec's office said the prime minister had been acquainted with Purič's intention to step down, while Purič rejected the rumours he had resigned due to disagreements within the SAB.
Civil Aviation Agency grounds two Adria Airways planes
LJUBLJANA - The Civil Aviation Agency has grounded two Adria Airways Bombardier CRJ900 planes, after lessors terminated lease contracts for the two planes due to payment default. Adria has already cancelled or rescheduked several flights scheduled for today. Adria said the agency issued an oral ban for the two planes that Adria leased from Trident Aviation Leasing Service on Thursday afternoon. A written decree is to be issued within the next five days. The agency is still deciding on Adria's operating licence in a separate, but related procedure. The state, which sold Adria in 2016, will be obliged to provide Slovenia's air connectivity with the world in case Adria's operating license is revoked. The Infrastructure Ministry has thus already prepared a proposal which would enable co-funding of certain routes.
DARS shortlists three Karavanke tunnel bidders for talks
LJUBLJANA - The national motorway company DARS has selected for further talks three out of the five bidders vying to build a second tube of the Karavanke tunnel, a key motorway link with Austria, media reported. DARS refused to make any comments until all of the bidders had been informed about the decision, which could still be challenged within eight days. TV Slovenija said that DARS had shortlisted Turkish builder Cengiz, a consortium of Kolektor CGP, Riko and Turkey's Yapi Merkezi, and Implenia Österreich, a consortium including Implenia Švica and CGP Novo Mesto.
Magna lays off half a dozen workers shortly after launch
HOČE - The Magna paint shop in Hoče, which was launched earlier this year, laid off six workers this week, Večer reported. The multinational car maker said it also hired six new people and that the number of its employees would remain unchanged. It added it was not planning any reduction in the number of regular employees, or extent of production in 2019. The six workers were laid off for business reasons, the paper reported. They were told the company was facing a decrease in orders and harsh conditions on the automotive market. Thus, the company launched a project aiming to cut expenses substantially.
Government endorses euro for culture bill, minister happy
LJUBLJANA - Culture Minister Zoran Poznič welcomed the government's decision to endorse a "culture euro" bill which envisages additional funds for culture to promote its development through investment. The price tag of the new bill, endorsed on Thursday, for the 2021-2027 period is EUR 122.6 million. Poznič said today that new investment schemes would ensure a balanced cultural development. The bill is expected to be passed at the start of 2020 and to come fully into force in 2021, said the minister, adding the Culture Ministry had enough funds for next year to set up the necessary network for its implementation.
MPs to discuss bill on recourse over bank bail-in on Tuesday
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will start its September session on Monday with questions time for the ministers and government Secretary General Stojan Tramte, while PM Marjan Šarec will take questions on Tuesday, when a bill on recourse over the 2013 bank bail-in is on the agenda. MPs will have almost five hours to discuss the government-sponsored bill designed to provide legal recourse for the holders of subordinated bank liabilities who were wiped out in the 2013 bank bailout.
Border municipalities urge govt to help in face of illegal migration
METLIKA/KOSTEL - Thirteen municipalities along the southern border with Croatia joined forces in urging the government to start renewing local roads that have been damaged from heavy use by the police patrolling the border and to start cleaning the border fence. Metlika Mayor Darko Zevnik told the STA that the initiative had also been addressed to PM Marjan Šarec. He said the move brought together the municipalities that had been affected by the influx in illegal crossings of the border. Responding to the call, the prime minister's office said Šarec would meet the mayors as soon as a date that suited all of them was identified.
Consumer confidence sinks to late-2016 level
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's consumer confidence deteriorated for the second month running in September to a level last seen in late 2016. Nevertheless, the index remains eight percentage points above the long-term average. Releasing the latest data, the Statistics Office noted that Slovenia's consumer confidence had been at record levels in 2017 and 2018. The value of the consumer confidence index was four percentage points below the August value and two points below the level a year ago. Year on year, only the job outlook deteriorated, by as many as 13 points.
150 years of trade unionism in Slovenia celebrated
BLED - The Pergam confederation of trade unions marked the 150th anniversary since the formation of Slovenia's first trade union at a general assembly in Bled that saw Prime Minister Marjan Šarec discuss the significance of social dialogue. "Although employees, employers and the government on the Economic and Social Council have differing views at times, we must never let the lack of dialogue lead to an end to social dialogue," Šarec said in his address. Pergam head Jakob Počivavšek said the union stuck by the values and tradition of its precursor, the Educational Association for Printers, set up in Ljubljana in 1868 as the first worker organisation in Slovenia.
Nigerians arrested for smuggling 31 illegal migrants
KOČEVJE - The Kočevje police arrested two Nigerians on Thursday evening after pulling them over and finding 31 illegal migrants in the back of their van. The vehicle, bearing Italian licence plates, was pulled over in the village of Morava, a few kilometres from the border with Croatia. The illegal migrants in the back were citizens of Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar and are currently being processed by the authorities, the Ljubljana Police Department said.
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