CORRECTION: The original story, and headline, made great play on the low hours and low pay on offer with this position. However, this appears to be data entry error in both cases. While the website glassdoor.com still claims the job is for five hours a week, and €4.50 euros an hour, a rapid and very helpful response from the British Embassy has set the facts straight. In reality, and per the HM Govt site, the job is 22.5 hours a week and pays €1538.9 a month. Or, going by our original hourly count, €17.09 an hour. More details of hte vacancy can be found here, while the original article, with inaccuracies struck out, is presented below.
Brexit is set to be one of the most complex tasks the UK has faced for decades, demanding resources and attention from all areas of the economy, all levels of society. With just a few months to go before March 29, 2019, when Britain will either face a “no deal” Brexit – and thus the end of all current agreements with the EU, and made as a member of the EU – or the current plan, supported by Brussels and the UK Prime Minister Theresa, but unlikely to pass a vote in Britain’s Parliament. In short, after a few years of “phony war” things are about to get very real, very fast, and no one knows what to expect.
It’s thus not surprising that the UK Embassy in Ljubljana is seeking to hire new staff to help deal with the challenges ahead from individuals and companies anxious to learn how a deal or no deal Brexit will affect them, so that they can plan ahead, and – going into the future –handle to greater amount of queries, research and admin that will undoubtedly be necessary once the UK leaves the EU.
Find our how to get dual citizenship in Slovenia here
However, a closer look at a recent job offer raises more questions that it answers. The position of Consular Policy Officer was posted on glassdoor.com on 1 December. This calls for someone who can serve as liaison with UK nationals and local authorities in Slovenia, to keep them informed of the progress and implementation of the UK-EU Citizens’ Rights agreements. This will focus on providing accurate and timely information online and elsewhere, along with pro-active outreach to UK nationals.
So far, so good, and for UK nationals who live in Slovenia and have been worried about the lack of attention paid to British citizens in Europe throughout the Brexit debate and aftermath, and what leaving the EU could mean with regard to banking, pensions, employment, onward movement, education, family rights and so on, it’s a welcome development to know there’s going to be someone at the Embassy dedicated to understanding the issues, sharing the key points, and looking out for their interests.
It all seemed so simple back then.... the question asked on the Brexit referendum. Photo: Wikipedia
However, looking down the job listing one’s heart begins to sink. While a “deal” Brexit, with a transition, is expected to take several years to implement, the job – which is due to start 04 February 2018 – is not a permanent post, but instead being offered for 12 months.
What’s more, while the new Consular Policy Officer will be based in the Ljubljana office of the Embassy they’re only expected to work five hours week. This seems about enough time to keep up to speed with developments in London and Brussels, deal with any emails on Brexit, and perhaps engage in a little pro-active contact with the community, but far too little to actually grasp the complexity of what’s about to happen, or to provide the attention that individuals and businesses will need in the months and years ahead.
Finally, the job offer, with an application deadline closing 13 December, is five hours a week, so let’s say an easy 20 hours a month. For this the lucky applicant – who is expected to be fluent in English and intermediate Slovene, as well as previous experience or awareness of British and/or local country public sector policy development, among other qualities – will receive a monthly salary of €90, or around €4.5 an hour. This compares to the current hourly minimum wage of €4.84 (Wikipedia).
Those interested in applying for this job can see the full offer here, while those who simply came here to read about Brexit are advised to stock up on popcorn: things are about to get interesting.
All our stories on Brexit and Slovenia can be found here
STA, 25 November 2018 - Nobody is excited about Brexit, we are saving what we can, Prime Minister Marjan Šarec said in Brussels after the Brexit deal was endorsed at Sunday's extraordinary EU summit. "We opened a parachute about half-way before the ground and now we're counting on it to ease the consequences of the fall," he said.
The leaders of 27 EU member states confirmed a comprehensive and complex divorce agreement with the UK that deals with the rights of citizens, financial settlement, the border on the island of Ireland, a transitional period and a non-binding political statement on future relations.
Šarec said the meeting was over relatively quickly and that everything had gone smoothly and in line with expectations. "We're all aware that it's not a happy occasion, but if the ratification is successful we have prevented the worst," he said.
Premier pa pozdravlja, da je EU-27 s potrditvijo sporazuma prispevala k temu, da bodo negativne posledice izhoda manjše, kot bi bile sicer. Izrazil je tudi upanje, da bo britanska stran v prihodnjih tednih in mesecih ravnala preudarno.— Vlada Republike Slovenije (@vladaRS) November 25, 2018
?Thierry Monasse/STA pic.twitter.com/NBNpeEjJ4X
In the second part of the meeting, the EU leaders were joined by British Prime Minister Theresa May. According to Šarec, May expressed her satisfaction with the deal, bearing in mind that the only other alternative would be a non-deal, which would mean big problems.
Slovenia believes the deal reached was the best possible solution in the given situation, regardless of the fact that some in the UK say that more could have been achieved, Šarec said.
He said the negotiation team led by Michael Barnier had done a very good job and should be congratulated. He rejected criticism that the team only talked to Berlin and Paris in the end, saying that it was logical that more attention was devoted to the most affected countries.
The UK was a tough negotiator and it would not be fair to judge their negotiation skills from the outside now, Šarec said.
But the Slovenian prime minister warned that the work was not over yet. The Brexit deal now faces the toughest challenge in the British parliament.
Šarec is moderately optimistic about this, believing in the sound judgement of British MPs.
You can read all our stories about Brexit and Slovenia here
STA, 15 November 2018 - Foreign Minister Miro Cerar said that it would take some time to analyse the Brexit agreement drawn up by British and EU negotiators, while stressing that it was of key importance that the interests and rights of people were taken care of and that the economic conditions for companies did not worsen.
Speaking to the press after a government session on Thursday, Cerar said that the agreement, confirmed by the British government yesterday, would be thoroughly analysed.
The 585-page agreement, accompanied by a draft political statement on the future relations between the UK and EU, while it also needs to be confirmed by the European Parliament and the European Council, is facing the biggest test in the British parliament.
Cerar said that the extensive document was being examined also in Slovenia as we speak, adding that all aspects of the document would be presented to the public once they were thoroughly examined.
The most important thing is that the ministries monitor what will happen in any situation "with our people and our companies present in the United Kingdom," he added.
Asked for comment on the deal, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GZS) noted that the European Commission had formed guidelines for companies for the event of a no-deal Brexit which were publicly available in 22 languages.
"However, this does not mean yet that we can be sure that in case of a no-deal Brexit deal there would be no problems for business," GZS Analytics' chief economist Bojan Ivanc said, adding that their assessment was that bigger companies were better prepared for an adverse scenario.
Ivanc said the key risk for Slovenia was an indirect one, if there was no deal and if trade or financial flows between the UK and key European countries were paralysed.
All out Brexit stories are here
British nationals can apply for dual citizenship in Slovenia as long as Britain remains in the EU and allows Slovenian citizens to do the same.
STA, 1 June 2018 - Slovenia would get EUR 1.47bn in funds for the common agricultural policy (CAP) in the next multi-year EU budget from 2021 to 2027, which is 13.5% less than in the current financing period, according to the detailed plans for the CAP unveiled by the European Commission on Friday.
STA, 29 May 2018 - Slovenia would get EUR 3.07bn in cohesion funds in the next multi-year EU budget, from 2012 to 2027, according to blueprints presented by the European Commission on Tuesday.