Pahor’s New Economic Advisor Is Former Central Banker

By , 22 Jan 2018, 14:18 PM Politics
Mr Arhar in 2012 Mr Arhar in 2012 YouTube screenshot

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France Arhar has been in the position since last December. 

January 22, 2018

The STA reports January 22, 2018, that President Borut Pahor has a new economic advisor after Helena Kamnar, his advisor in the first term, retired at the end of last year. Veteran banker France Arhar has been the president's adviser for economic and financial matters since last December, the newspaper Delo reports.

Arhar was the first governor of Banka Slovenije, Slovenia's central bank, between 1991 and 2001, and served as chairman of the Unicredit Slovenija bank between 2003 and 2012.

He was the director of the Slovenian Bank Association, which brings together banks, savings banks and leasing firms operating in Slovenia, from June 2012 until he decided to retire last year.

The 69-year-old will now work for the president pro bono, thus joining former Constitutional Court Judge Ernest Petrič and former Minister for Slovenians Abroad Boštjan Žekš.

"The president has asked for my help, because he was criticised for not commenting on topical issues more often, and because his views must be well grounded," Arhar told Delo.

He said he had decided to join Pahor's team after talking to Petrič.

One of the key decisions that await Pahor in the coming months will be to pick the next central bank governor as the term of Boštjan Jazbec expires in the middle of 2019.

His replacement must be found at least six months before he ends his term, but according to Delo, Jazbec has allegedly applied to become a new member of the leadership of the Single Resolution Board, the central resolution authority within the Banking Union, so the process of finding his successor may need to start sonner.

Delo notes that Arhar has in the past put forward two candidates for vice-governors, Marko Bošnjak and Jožef Bradeško, both of whom have received the support of the coalition.

Moreover, his former deputy at the Bank Association Irena Vodopivec Jean was appointed Banka Slovenije vice governor, which is why Arhar is considered to be very influential at the central bank.

Budget documents for this year show that the president's office will employ 42 people in this term.

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