This summary is provided by the STA:
Self-isolation cut to seven days from Monday
LJUBLJANA - The self-isolation time frame in Slovenia will be cut from at least ten to seven days from Monday, health officials said. This will apply to most of infected people, except for those with weakened immune systems or those with a severe Covid-19. A person may stop self-isolating provided they will not have fever or any other Covid symptoms 24 hours before the end of self-isolation and will test negative on the seventh day.
Thursday with nearly 9,900 confirmed coronavirus cases
LJUBLJANA - A total of 9,858 people tested positive for coronavirus in Slovenia on Thursday, show fresh official figures. The estimated total of actively infected people is nearing 100,000, meaning almost 5% of the population is infected. Hospitalisations increased to 599 this morning, whereas the number of ICU cases dropped to 144. Another twelve people with Covid died.
Committee agrees with tweaks to health insurance act
LJUBLJANA - The Health Committee endorsed on Thursday amendments to the health insurance act that would cut the period of sick leave for which employees receive compensation from their employer from 30 to 20 working days. The proposal, tabled by the opposition Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB), received support of the coalition MPs. Meanwhile, the government does not support the changes.
Speaker Zorčič, Minister Tonin test positive for coronavirus
LJUBLJANA - Parliamentary Speaker Igor Zorčič has tested positive for coronavirus and is in self-isolation, the parliament said, while Defence Minister Matej Tonin, the president of the coalition New Slovenia (NSi), also said on Twitter he has tested positive. Zorčič tested positive on Thursday and was thus among the 9,858 infections confirmed in Slovenia that day. Tonin meanwhile tweeted: "I am positive. Currently without any symptoms. Vaccination works. Take care of yourselves, stay healthy."
Pundits critical of Janša's statements about Taiwan, China
LJUBLJANA - Ana Bojinović Fenko, a professor of international relations, and Marta Kos, Slovenia's ex-ambassador to Germany and Switzerland, have criticised PM Janez Janša's recent statements about China and Taiwan, as they spoke to the STA about the country's new foreign policy strategy, which will be discussed in parliament next week. The centre-right opposition National Party (SNS), which often supports the current government's policies, meanwhile labelled Janša's statements as "a mistake".
Supreme State Prosecutor opposes proposed penal code changes
LJUBLJANA - The Supreme State Prosecutor's Office expressed opposition to proposed changes to the penal code that seek to shorten periods of limitation in white-collar crime cases, saying this was an ill-advised and unjustified interference in criminal law with no basis in statistical analyses of the duration of criminal proceedings. The NGO Institute 8th March also weighed in with its opinion, saying that it would launch the procedure to initiate a referendum on the matter if the changes were to be adopted.
Hojs attends two-day conference on migrations in Lithuania
LJUBLJANA - Interior Minister Aleš Hojs concluded a two-day conference on migrations in Vilnius, which discussed the issues of using migrations for political gains and common measures to strengthen surveillance at the EU's external borders in light of increased migrations. Hojs said that modern surveillance systems and physical barriers should be used where necessary to improve border protection, as they have proven to be a useful measure in the past, the Interior Ministry said in a press release.
Kangler denies allegations of interference in police work
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary commission investigating suspicion of political interference in the work of police interviewed Interior Ministry State Secretary Franc Kangler, who denied during a four-hour session allegations about his unwarranted interfering in either the work of police or staffing decisions. He was heard after the inquiry adopted an interim report on 10 January, proposing that Interior Minister Aleš Hojs and both state secretaries should resign.
Real estate fund Equinox to be listed on 31 January
LJUBLJANA - Equinox, a real estate fund created last year with the split of the real estate branch from the rest of the Group Union Hoteli, will be listed on the Ljubljana Stock Exchange (LJSE) on 31 January. All existing shares of the company will be listed and their reference price will be published on 28 January. Equinox will be the first ever private real estate company on the LJSE.
Tourism Chamber calls for aid to tourism sector
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's Tourism and Hospitality Chamber (TGZS) called for immediate additional support for the tourism sector due to the Covid crisis, urging the government to pay out the previously promised financial aid to companies with the biggest revenue losses. They have been waiting for this aid for ten months already, the TGZS said.
Ministers visit Slovenian minority in Croatia
LJUBLJANA - Agriculture Minister Jože Podgoršek and Minister for Slovenians Abroad Helena Jaklitsch met the members of the Slovenian community living in Croatia's Gorski Kotar region, discussing positive developments in the region. They also inspected the construction of the Gorski Kotar tourist-educational farm in the village of Prezid, planned as a multifunctional community centre where the the minority will pursue various activities.
Slovenian spas saw a rise in visitor numbers last year
CELJE - Slovenian spas recorded more visitors in 2021 than the year before, although not as many as in 2019. "2022 will also be exceptionally demanding for the entire tourism sector," the Association of Slovenian Natural Spas said. The 13 members of the association recorded 583,607 guests last year and over 2.2 million nights. The number of guests was up by 22.4% compared to 2020, while nights were up by 18.1%, with a majority of the guests being domestic ones, and only 100,690 or 17% coming from abroad.
Micro companies and SMEs receive EUR 30m for digitalisation
LJUBLJANA - The Economy Ministry and the Slovenian Enterprise Fund have awarded EUR 30 million to 311 micro, small and medium-sized enterprises for digital transformation of their business and production processes, the ministry said. A total of 668 companies, including 316 from the eastern cohesion region and 352 from the western region, applied to the P4D ReactEU call for applications that will be fully funded from the ReactEU mechanism. Companies with at least five employees received EUR 30,000-100,000 in grants with the state covering up to 60% of eligible costs of the project.
AmCham debate discusses challenges in economy
LJUBLJANA - The global economy, including Slovenia, is currently experiencing major changes, and to succeed in this tumultuous period, adaptation and cooperation will be key, said the participants of AmCham's business breakfast. The debate was attended by Foreign Minister Anže Logar, who highlighted Slovenia's size as an advantage.
Contemporary History Museum puts on outdoor exhibit on migration
LJUBLJANA - The National Museum of Contemporary History has set up an outdoor exhibition in front of its building in the Tivoli park, presenting the migration processes in Europe in the 20th century that have shaped the identities of millions of people. The exhibition reveals intimate stories of migrants and their descendants.
Consumer confidence unchanged in January
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's consumer confidence indicator remained the same on the monthly level in January, while it increased by five percentage points year-on-year, the Statistics Office said. Compared to January 2021, the consumer confidence indicator improved this month in all components except expectations about household finances.
ARSO releases climate change projections until 2100
LJUBLJANA - The country's Environment Agency (ARSO) has released an atlas of climate projections for Slovenia until the end of the 21st century to help stakeholders adapt to climate change. The new tool is intended for all those who are or will be involved in planning adjustments to the climate change in various areas, ARSO has said. Almost 2,250 graphic simulations for various meteorological, hydrological and agrometeorological variables are available at ARSO's website.
Ljubljana Castle visitor numbers up in 2021
LJUBLJANA - Ljubljana Castle, one of the most popular landmarks in Slovenia, was visited by over 460,000 tourists in 2021, of whom some 142,000 used the funicular. Both figures are higher than in the first coronavirus year 2020, but still significantly below the record year 2019 for the castle's operator. The number of visitors was 32% higher than in 2020 and the number of those who took the funicular by 45%, Ljubljanski Grad said. As many as 63% of the visitors came from abroad, mostly from Germany.