Morning Headlines for Slovenia: 10 September, 2020

By , 10 Sep 2020, 04:16 AM News
Morning Headlines for Slovenia: 10 September, 2020 Flickr - Ben Mason CC by 2.0

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This summary is provided by the STA:

EU court dismisses Slovenia's case over Teran wine

LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg - The General Court of the EU dismissed Slovenia's appeal to annul the European Commission delegated regulation of May 2017 to allow Croatian wine producers to use Teran, the name of a red wine protected by Slovenia, on their wine labels. Slovenia, which has had Teran, a red wine grown in the region of Kras, recognised as a protected designation of origin (PDO), challenged the delegated regulation in September 2017. The decision was met with frustration and blame game at home.

Aleksandra Pivec resigns as Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) leader

LJUBLJANA - Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) leader Aleksandra Pivec resigned despite previously vowing to fight efforts by the party's council to unseat her. She announced, however, that she would run for chairmanship again when the party holds an election congress given that she has "strong grassroots support". The party will be led by Tomaž Gantar, the health minister, until the election congress. One of the harshest critics of Pivec's conduct, Gantar stepped down as chair of the council to act as interim leader.

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Record 79 new coronavirus infections reported for Tuesday

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia recorded 79 new coronavirus cases from 2,560 tests carried out on Tuesday, an absolute daily record for the numbers of new cases and daily tests since the first case was recorded in the country on 4 March, the latest government data shows. As many as 590 cases are active. The share of infected older people at care homes is increasing again, with 15 new cases confirmed yesterday. Government Covid-19 spokesperson Jelko Kacin said this called for "additional measures".

Logar wants active foreign policy, sees opportunities in "new patterns of cooperation"

LJUBLJANA - Anže Logar said he wanted to overhaul Slovenia's foreign policy within a year "given the geostrategic changes and the new dynamic of relations in the global arena". Slovenia's foreign policy should become more confident and active. Stronger transatlantic relations are also a priority, said Logar, who again rejected the debates about "core Europe"; He sees Slovenia in the core of equal member states.

Committee debate on revised budget hears criticism of Probation Administration cut

LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Judiciary Committee got acquainted as the first among several committees with the proposed revised budget for 2020, which envisages 75.3 million, EUR 145,500 less than in the original budget, for the Justice Ministry, the Prison Administration and the Probation Administration. Justice Ministry State Secretary Zlatko Ratej explained that the Prison Administration was in fact getting EUR 1.7 million more, while the ministry will get EUR 1.6 million less and the Probation Administration EUR 262,000 less.

Počivalšek causes stir in SMC over staffing announcement

LJUBLJANA - The head of the Modern Centre Party (SMC) and economy minister, Zdravko Počivalšek, has caused a stir in the junior coalition party for announcing his plan to appoint former Koper Mayor Boris Popovič a state secretary at the Economy Ministry. The issue was discussed by the SMC deputy group on Tuesday. Media report that some prominent SMC members threatened to leave the party if Popovič is indeed appointed. Počivalšek allegedly said after the debate he would give the issue some more thought.

Ascent Resources formally starts procedure to sue Slovenia

LONDON, UK - The UK-based company Ascent Resources has formally begun procedures to start an investor dispute against Slovenia at international arbitration for taking measures to protect its groundwater from fracking, the NGO Friends of the Earth announced. On its website, the NGO released a letter addressed to senior government officials in which it formally notifies the existence of the dispute, while also expressing willingness for negotiation in "hope that an amicable solution can be found to the present dispute".

Draft strategy predicts climate neutrality by 2050

LJUBLJANA - The Environment Ministry unveiled the long-awaited draft climate strategy until 2050. The centrepiece of the document is zero net emissions or climate neutrality by the target year. The use of coal is planned to be reduced by 60% by 2030 compared to 2005, and a decision on a new generator at the NEK power plant is to be made by 2027. The goals are is "a challenge and an opportunity for sectors" such as transport, energy, industry, agriculture, construction and land use, the ministry said.

July exports down by 2.9% y/y, imports by 10.9%, surplus 2nd highest in a decade

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's exports amounted to EUR 2.94 billion in July, a 2.9% year-on-year decrease, while imports were down by 10.9% to EUR 2.74 billion, which made for the second highest external trade surplus in a decade, the Statistics Office said. In the first seven months of 2020, exports declined by 4.3% and imports by 10.0%, but a surplus was generated each month.

Postojna Cave operator to make significant staff cuts

POSTOJNA - The operator of the Postojna Cave has been forced to lay off a number of employees as it grapples with a 83% drop in visit due to the coronavirus crisis. Postojnska Jama said it would need to "dismiss a larger number of workers" as a last-resort measure for the sake of long-term sustainability of operation. The management will announce the exact number of redundancies to employees by Friday, while Primorske Novice reports that up to 60 out of the 174 employees are to be sacked.

Work starts on car park, mall extension in Rudnik

LJUBLJANA - Ground was broken for a multi-storey car park between the Supernova and Eleclerc shopping malls in the Ljubljana's shopping district of Rudnik, and for an extension to Supernova. The EUR 70 million investment is expected to create 800 jobs and will significantly expand the already large retail district. The car park is scheduled to be finalised in the spring of 2021, and the extension of Supernova one year later.

First Slovenian women writer's fairy tale finally published

LJUBLJANA - A fairy tale about a girl soldier written by the first Slovenian women writer, Josipina Urbančič Turnograjska (1833-1854), was published for the first time almost 170 years after it was written. Rožmanova Lenčica, written in 1852, tells a story about Lenčica, a brave girl who decides to go to war against the Turks to defend her homeland and its values. The book was illustrated by Jelka Godec Schmidt, while the story was adapted and the language modernised by Mira Delavec Touhami.

Women prisoners found to be discriminated against

IG - Slovenia's Equality Rights Ombudsman has found that prisoners in the country's sole incarceration facility for women are discriminated against compared to their male counterparts in Slovenia's largest prison. The ombudsman has established the inmates at the Ig prison just south of Ljubljana are subject of discrimination when it comes to visitors, private and intimate contacts, phone calls and electronic communication.

Slovenia has one of lowest child mortality rates, UNICEF says

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia ranks among the countries with the lowest mortality rate for children under five years, shows the latest UNICEF report on child survival in the world. The total of children aged below five who died last year was the lowest in the past three decades. The report indicates that under-five mortality rate dropped from 12.5 million in 1990 to 5.2 million last year, said UNICEF Slovenija.

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