What follows is a weekly review of events involving Slovenia, as prepared by the STA.
FRIDAY, 10 September
BRDO PRI KRANJU - EU finance ministers meeting to discuss the health and economic situation in the EU and eurozone, expressed optimism about the developments, noting the situation was significantly better than expected months ago. However, they also cautioned that the danger was not over yet.
KARPACZ, Poland - Prime Minister Janez Janša received the award for person of the year in Central and Eastern Europe at the Economic Forum in Karpacz, Poland. In his speech, he underlined the region's key role in the bloc and its Christian heritage.
LJUBLJANA - PM Janez Janša and IMF executive director Kristalina Georgieva and OECD secretary general Mathias Cormann discussed the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the global economy and recovery plans. The meeting with Cormann also focussed on other challenges of OECD members. Cormann also met Foreign Minister Anže Logar, with the pair expressing optimism about the global economic recovery.
LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor hosted a meeting with Health Minister Janez Poklukar and members of the government Covid advisory group over the coronavirus outbreak to call for vaccination, especially for all over 50 years of age.
LJUBLJANA - The Government Office for Slovenians Abroad announced that a total of 63 ethnic-Slovenian residents of Venezuela had so far been repatriated to Slovenia. All of them are doing well, with many of them already in employment, and students included in the education system.
LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor offered his condolences to his Portuguese counterpart Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa on the death of the country's former President Jorge Sampaio. In a post on his Twitter profile Pahor described Sampaio as a great statesman who promoted dialogue, solidarity and freedom.
LJUBLJANA - The KSJS confederation of public sector trade unions called on the government to meet its obligations towards the public media, chiefly to pay for the public service performed by the STA and provide adequate funding for public broadcaster RTV Slovenija.
SATURDAY, 11 September
BRDO PRI KRANJU - EU finance ministers spoke in favour of a continuation of the bloc's current investment cycle. Slovenia's Andrej Šircelj said everyone showed a great desire for Europe to continue with this investment cycle and to become stronger after the pandemic.
LJUBLJANA - Foreign Minister Anže Logar said Slovenia remained deeply committed to the prevention and terrorism and radicalisation, placing special emphasis on the fight against terrorism in Western Balkans, noting that Slovenia would continue to work closely with the US and other allies as he paid tribute to the victims of the 11 September terrorist attacks.
IDRIJA - The main ceremony remembering the return of the western Primorska region to the homeland was held in Idrija with Mayor Tomaž Vencelj saying it was important the event was held in Idrija, which had been an important part of Primorska for half a century and made the region richer with its natural beauty, heritage and successful economy.
SUNDAY, 12 September
BASOVIZZA, Italy - A ceremony for four victims of Fascism executed in September 1930, known among Slovenians as the Basovizza Heroes, was held at the memorial site, with Minister for Slovenians Abroad Helena Jaklitsch saying that it was a reminder of how much misery and pain humans and authorities could cause if they let hatred and exclusion win.
ŽUŽEMBERK - The coalition New Slovenia (NSi) held its annual informal gathering, with its president Matej Tonin saying that it was not possible to build a stable government without cooperation through the political centre and without the NSi.
BOLOGNA, Italy - Slovenian President Borut Pahor addressed a meeting of the G20 Interfaith Forum, saying that divisions, in particular political and ideological, were one of the societal wounds that need to be urgently healed. He also proposed a meeting of senior religious representatives in the Western Balkan region.
PTUJ - The poultry group Perutnina Ptuj, which was taken over by Ukrainian Holding MHP in early 2019, reported EUR 294 million in sales revenue for 2020, a new record and 3% increase on the year before. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization were up 7% to EUR 47.7 million.
MONDAY, 13 September
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.
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 to take 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.
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.
BOLOGNA, Italy - President Borut Pahor was awarded Sigillum Magnum, the highest recognition from the University of Bologna given to influential figures. Pahor said he understood the honour as recognition of his efforts for dialogue, reconciliation and better future.
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.
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.
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.
LJUBLJANA - The ruling Democrats (SDS) continued 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 was followed by the opposition Social Democrats (SD), whose support dropped by 2.4 points to 10.3%.
LJUBLJANA - The Slovenian Armed Forces estimated 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.
TUESDAY, 14 September
STRASBOURG, France - The European Court of Human Rights ruled Slovenia violated Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the European Convention on Human Rights in dispossessing holders of shares and subordinated bonds as part of the 2013/14 bank bailout, finding they had no reasonable opportunity to challenge or seek compensation for the Slovenian central bank's measure.
LJUBLJANA - The opposition demanded answers after POP TV released photos showing Prime Minister Janez Janša spending time with the lobbyist Božo Dimnik on a yacht owned by the businessmen Andrej Marčič in 2016. The POP TV report said this showed Janša and Marčič had not been meeting accidentally, as Marčič claimed back when photos were published of the two playing golf in Mauritius almost two decades ago. Janša said his playing golf with Dimnik and Marčič had nothing to do with lobbying and he denied doing any deals with them. later in the week, Janša failed to attend a session of a parliamentary commission that wanted to debate allegations of his improper lobbying contacts.
MILAN, Italy - President Borut Pahor met Attilio Fontana, the president of the Italian region of Lombardy, for what his office said were talks about cooperation, in particularly economic ties, and opportunities to develop and enhance bilateral relations.
CELJE - Interior Minister Aleš Hojs announced Slovenia planned to erect several dozen kilometres of new fencing on the border with Croatia in an effort to crack down on illegal migrations. The construction work should start within two or three weeks.
LJUBLJANA - Economy Ministry State Secretary Simon Zajc said Slovenia had been recording solid tourism figures this year but the sector was not expected to bounce back before 2023 or, more likely, 2024. Asian guests are unlikely to return before 2023, he said.
LJUBLJANA - The steel group SIJ generated EUR 451.6 million in sales revenue in the first half of the year, or 24.4% more year-on-year, while bouncing from a loss in the first half of 2020 to more than EUR 10 million in net profit.
WEDNESDAY, 15 September
LJUBLJANA - As the Covid pass mandate came into effect, a crowd of about 8,000 people gathered for a rally in front of the parliament building to protest against the new rules. The protest turned into a riot and police had to use a water canon and tear gas to disperse the crowd. Seven police officers were injured. In response officials and politicians from both sides of the isle condemned the violence.
CELJE - Prime Minister Janez Janša and his Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orban were on hand for the launch of the the 53rd Celje International Trade Fair as Hungary is featured as the partner country. They both expressed optimism about the post-Covid economic recovery and the future.
CELJE - The governments of Slovenia and Hungary held a joint session with officials conducting an overview of existing cooperation and signing a letter of intent on a joint fund for Prekmurje and Porabje, the border regions populated by the Hungarian and Slovenian ethnic minorities, and a memorandum of understanding on development cooperation.
CELJE - The home affairs ministers of Slovenia and Hungary, Aleš Hojs and Sandor Pinter, agreed at a meeting about the urgent need to prevent mass migration flows in the EU and pressure on the bloc's external borders. Meanwhile, the two defence ministers, Matej Tonin and Tibor Benko, discussed bilateral military and defence cooperation.
ROME, Italy - President Borut Pahor upheld the key points from the State of the Union address by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen as addressed a meeting in Rome with the heads of state of 15 EU countries as part of the Arraiolos initiative discussing the path to strategic autonomy.
LJUBLJANA - In assessing the annual address to the European Parliament by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Slovenian MEPs said her speech was realistic but lacked concrete proposals, including on social policy. Some welcomed the announced legislation on media freedom.
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary foreign policy and defence committees took note of Slovenia's plans to increase the number of personnel in NATO's mission in Iraq to up to 15 soldiers and civilian experts under a decision adopted by the government in the summer.
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia was allotted a diplomatic apartment in Rome as part of the succession process after the break-up of Yugoslavia. The country already uses the apartment as a residence of the ambassador to the Holy See.
LJUBLJANA - UNESCO, the United Nations educational scientific and cultural organisation, formally declared a biosphere reserve spanning the Mura, Drava and Danube rivers, the first five-country biosphere in the world.
CELJE - Slovenian maker of ultralight aircraft Pipistrel signed an aircraft manufacturing agreement with Hungary's Genevation Aircraft on the manufacture, marketing and provision of after-sales support for select markets, a deal the company says is worth in excess of EUR 100 million over ten years.
LJUBLJANA - Spanish company Glovo announced it had finalised the acquisition of the food delivery platform Ehrana, after announcing in May that it would take over one of the largest home delivery providers in Slovenia.
THURSDAY, 16 September
LJUBLJANA - The Institute of Macroeconomic Analysis and Development, the government's economic forecaster, upgraded Slovenia's growth forecast for the year to 6.1%, 1.5 percentage points up from its spring outlook. It projects for GDP growth to then ease off to 4.7% in 2022 and 3.3% in 2023.
PORTOROŽ - A two-day meeting of the management board of the European Asylum Support Office started, with one of the topics being reforming the office into a European agency for asylum, with which it would assume new obligations and tasks.
CLEVELAND, US - Helena Jaklitsch, the minister for Slovenians abroad, started a 10-day visit to Slovenians in the USA, beginning in Cleveland, Ohio and concluding in Lemont, Illinois. The overarching theme is the 30th anniversary of Slovenian independence.
CELJE - Delegates of the coalition Modern Centre Party (SMC) gave party leader Zdravko Počivalšek the mandate for a merger, a tie-up and cooperation with other related parties and lists at the next general election. The party is to merge with the Economically Active Party (GAS), a pro-business party headed by National Council President Alojz Kovšca, possibly before the end of the year.
NAZARJE - The Nazarje-based home appliance maker BSH Hišni aparati, a Slovenian subsidiary of BSH Hausgeräte GmbH, was approved a state subsidy worth EUR 7.7 million to support an investment that will create 62 new jobs.
LJUBLJANA - Slovenian Michelin starred chef Ana Roš from Hiša Franko placed seventh in the rankings of the world's top chefs compiled by The Best Chef Awards 2021, climbing 11 spots from last year, according to The Best Chef Awards website.
LJUBLJANA - The recipient of this year's Badjura Award, given out for lifetime achievements in film since 1995, is the innovator and film sound engineer Emilija Soklič, one of the first Slovenian professional female film industry workers and an innovator in sound design.
LJUBLJANA - Robert Simonišek, an author and art historian born in Celje in 1977, has won the 2021 Rožanc Prize for best collection of essays for Pejsaži - Sanjati na Soncu (Landscapes - Dreaming in the Sun).