Morning Headlines for Slovenia: Tuesday, 14 September 2021

By , 14 Sep 2021, 04:32 AM News
Catch up with the news from Slovenia, wherever you are Catch up with the news from Slovenia, wherever you are Flickr Kheng Cheng TOH CC-by-2.0.jpg

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This summary is provided by the STA

Slovenia to donate EUR 300,000 to Afghanistan

GENEVA, Switzerland/LJUBLJANA - FM Anže Logar announced at the international donor conference for Afghanistan that Slovenia will donate EUR 300,000 in aid to help the country amid a deteriorating humanitarian crisis. The funds will be used for food, medical care and aid for the displaced Afghans and for refugees in the neighbouring countries, the Foreign Ministry said in a release. Logar, who addressed the conference via video call, expressed concern about the increasing humanitarian crisis and the affected people in Afghanistan. More than US$1 billion in aid was raised, said UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.

Bavdaž Kuret named special adviser to UN General Assembly president

NEW YORK, US - Darja Bavdaž Kuret, a seasoned diplomat who served as Slovenia's former permanent representative to the UN, was appointed special adviser to Abdulla Shahid, the president of the 76th UN General Assembly, who will take over on Tuesday. Bavdaž Kuret's is the second highest post ever held by a Slovenian representative to the UN after Danilo Türk served as UN assistant secretary general for political affairs from 2000 to 2005.

Janša calls for preparedness for future crises at WHO Europe

LJUBLJANA - PM Janez Janša addressed a session of the WHO Regional Office for Europe to stress the importance of preparedness and effective responsiveness to future health crises. He also discussed the importance of science and solidarity in battling the Covid-19 pandemic. The release from the prime minister's office quotes Janša in saying that healthcare systems, which had been under tremendous pressure, now needed significant investments and innovations to become stronger and more resilient. He welcomed the initiative of WHO Europe to establish a special pan-European commission for health and sustainable development.

Pahor honoured by University of Bologna

BOLOGNA, Italy - President Borut Pahor was awarded Sigillum Magnum, the highest recognition from the University of Bologna given to influential figures. Thanking for the honour at a special ceremony, Pahor said he understood it as recognition of his efforts for dialogue, reconciliation and better future. The university praised Pahor for his efforts for dialogue between nations and countries and his dedication to the fundamental European values. The president also met Romano Prodi, a former Italian prime minister and former president of the European Commission.

Covid pass mandate seen as way to keep society open

LJUBLJANA - Employees and users of services in nearly all sectors will have to comply with the vaccinated-recovered-tested rule from Wednesday, a decision that government officials say is designed to offer the best possible protection while keeping the economy and society open. For employees, the cost of testing will be covered by employers, who are allowed to sanction those who do not comply in accordance with regulations governing safety at work or employment relationships.

Covid-19 hospitalisations pass 300

LJUBLJANA - Another 282 people tested positive for coronavirus in Slovenia on Sunday, an increase of 20% from the same day a week ago, as the number of Covid-19 patients in hospitals passed 300 and one more patient died. Official data shows 312 patients were treated in hospitals this morning, including 74 in intensive care. The National Institute of Pubic Health estimates there are now 9,791 active coronavirus cases in the country. The 14-day incidence per 100,000 is at 462.

Creative sector discussed as generator of economic growth

LJUBLJANA - A panel held as part of the Future Unlocked online conference agreed the creative and culture sector plays an important role in generating economic growth. The main topics of the two-day online conference hosted by Slovenia as the EU presiding country is the role of the creative sector in the green transition, social innovation and economic growth, and in attaining sustainable goals. Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek said many companies were aware of the added value brought by creativity, while there was still a lot of room for improvement.

Conference discusses rights of small shareholders

BLED - The rights and obligations of small shareholders were in the focus of an international investors' conference in Bled, with panellists highlighting access to information, cross-border share holdings and sustainable corporate governance as some of the key issues. Corporate information must be comprehensive, comparable and standardised, said Carmine Di Noia, commissioner of the Italian Commission for Companies and the Stock Exchange. He said greater uptake of electronic means could not be an excuse to make participation of shareholders more difficult. The conference, which also discussed saving for retirement, was organised by the Slovenian association of small shareholders VZMD and Better Finance, the European Federation of Investors and Financial Services Users.

Anti-money laundering agency gets full-fledged head

LJUBLJANA - The government appointed Damjan Žugelj a full-fledged director of the Office for Money Laundering Prevention, after he led it as acting head since 15 March. He will take over on 15 September for a five-year term, with the option of reappointment. Žugelj, who holds a PhD in law, previously served as director of the Securities Market Agency and director of the company publishing the Official Gazette.

SDS remains in the lead, govt rating improves in Delo poll

LJUBLJANA - The ruling Democrats (SDS) continue to top the party rankings at 18.3% in the latest monthly Mediana poll conducted for the newspaper Delo, with their support rising 1.2 percentage points compared to August. The SDS is followed by the opposition Social Democrats (SD), whose support dropped by 2.4 points to 10.3%. The voter approval rating for the government has also improved.

Slovenian minority in Hungary gets EUR 2.3m for economy promotion

LJUBLJANA - Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek and Minister for Slovenians Abroad Helena Jaklitsch signed a EUR 2.3 million programme for the promotion of the economy of the Slovenian ethnic minority in Hungary in the 2021-2024 period. "Slovenians are Slovenians, be it here or beyond the border. This programme is the right move for an additional boost and development of the economic basis of the area populated by the Slovenian ethnic minority," Počivalšek said. Jaklitsch said a "strong economy also means a more self-confident minority, which in turn means more care for the language and development of the potential in cultural life".

New concept of voluntary service ramps up interest in army

LJUBLJANA - The Slovenian Armed Forces estimate the interest in voluntary service has increased by 40% to 50% this year as a new concept of voluntary service was introduced on 5 July. Presenting the experiences, Lieutenant-Colonel Jurij Raduha, the head of the SAF Training Centre, said that of the 172 candidates involved in the first of three phases of service, 159 successfully completed it and 140 entered the second phase. Last year, 106 candidates were deployed in voluntary service.

Postojna Cave to welcome 220,000 visitors this year

POSTOJNA - The Postojna Cave, one of Slovenia's main natural landmarks, which reopened for visitors in June after the longest closure in its history due to Covid-19 restrictions, expects the pre-pandemic figures to be reached in ten years. This year it expects around 220,000 visitors if no new lockdown is imposed, which is comparable to ten years ago, the company's director Marjan Batagelj told the press. Postojnska Jama revenue topped EUR 8.4 million at the end of 2020, which means a loss of almost EUR 2.6 million, while this year's revenue is expected to reach EUR 10 million.

Kolektor signs road deal contract in Croatia

NOVI VINODOLSKI, Croatia - Slovenian company Kolektor CPG, the leading partner in a consortium with Italy's ICM, signed a contract with the Croatian national motorway company Hrvatske Autoceste (HAC) on the construction of a by-pass road in the coastal town of Novi Vinodolski. The project is estimated at EUR 77.8 million. Kolektor is also involved in several other projects in Croatia, including a EUR 75 million construction of a road connecting Škurinje and the port of Rijeka.

Slovenia just below EU average in adult education

LJUBLJANA - In 2020, 14.3% of Slovenians aged 15 or more participated in education and learning programmes, which is just below the EU average. Data from the Statistics Office shows that the percentage has been dropping, with the biggest fall seen in the pandemic year. The highest share was recorded in the 15-25 age group, at 76.6%, but the proportion drops with age. In the 25-49 group, 10.9% were involved in lifelong education and only 3% in the 50 plus group.

Cavers break over 1,000 metres deep

BOVEC - Cavers from the Ljubljana Cave Exploration Association have surpassed a depth of 1,000 metres in a cave under the highland glacial karst area on the Kanin mountains. The newly discovered cave is one of the 100 deepest caves in the world, said Matic Di Batista, president of the association. The newly discovered cave in a cave system called the Abyss of the Sleeping Dinosaur is also the tenth in Slovenia with a depth of more than 1,000 metres.

Portorož hosting WTA 250 tournament

PORTOROŽ - The Slovenian seaside resort of Portorož is hosting the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) circuit until Sunday for a tournament with a prize money of US$235,238. The first seed, Croatia's Petra Martić ranks 32nd in the WTA rankings. Second seed is Kazakh player Yulia Putintseva, 33rd in the world rankings, and the third seed, Alison Riske of the US ranks 35th. The tournament will feature eight Slovenian players, including Tamara Zidanšek as the 5th seed.

Volleyball: Slovenia beat Croatia to enter Euro quarter-finals

OSTRAVA, Czech Republic - The Slovenian men's volleyball team made it to the quarter-finals of the European Championships by beating Croatia in the round of 16. The team needed four sets to beat the neighbours, taking the first set convincingly and only slipping in the third set. Slovenia will play their quarter-finals match in Ostrava on Wednesday with the winner of the round of 16 encounter between the reining Olympic champions France and the Czech Republic.

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