Ljubljana related

29 Jun 2022, 06:34 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

SSH supervisors and CEO Žlak agree on early termination of service

LJUBLJANA - The supervisory board of the Slovenian Sovereign Holding (SSH) and CEO Janez Žlak reached an agreement on early termination of service, the SSH said in a press release. Žlak's term will expire on 31 August, allowing undisturbed operations and decision-making, the press release said. The supervisors thanked Žlak for a job well done and also asked the relevant nomination commission to launch procedures for the appointment of a new CEO. They also reviewed portfolio management results for the first quarter of 2022, which show that the profitability of portfolio was at 3.7%, two percentage points lower than in the same period last year.

Marta Kos Freedom Movement's candidate for president

LJUBLJANA - Marta Kos, vice-president of the Freedom Movement, officially announced her bid for the presidency of the republic. The first of the candidates so far to run with the support of a parliamentary party, Kos said she was "proud to be a representative of the progressive forces that restored people's dignity and hope for the future after two difficult years of backwardness." She said she would be unlike Borut Pahor, the incumbent who eschewed the role of moral authority. Prime Minister Robert Golob said it was time to "change how the office of the president is performed."

Institute of Public Health now in charge of pandemic management

LJUBLJANA - A new advisory group for Covid-19 at the National Institute of Public Health (NIJZ) has been formed, a move that Health Minister Danijel Bešič Loredan said meant the management of the pandemic has now been taken over by experts. The group will be headed by Mario Fafangel, the head of the NIJZ centre for communicable diseases, and features health professionals as well as an anthropologist, a communications expert, a mathematician and a sanitary engineer. Unlike during the previous government, the advisory group will work with the Health Ministry and if a ministry decision is different than what the group recommended, this will be clearly communicated, according to Bešič Loredan.

PM and FM affirm Slovenia's commitments to NATO

LJUBLJANA - Prime Minister Robert Golob and Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon affirmed Slovenia's commitments to NATO ahead of their departure for Madrid where the NATO summit is starting. Holding separate press conferences on various topics, they both confirmed that radical changes in Slovenia's defence and foreign policies were not to be expected. Asked about whether Slovenia will talk the potential withdrawal from the purchase of 45 Boxer APCs, Golob said that "defence matters are not debated in front of the media".

Govt approves NATO accession protocols for Sweden and Finland

LJUBLJANA - The government approved motions for Slovenia to sign the NATO accession protocols of Sweden and Finland. A session of the parliamentary Foreign Policy Committee was called for Wednesday morning to discuss the two motions, the Government Communications Office said. The approval was given in a correspondence session just as a three-day NATO summit was starting. It is expected that the protocols will be signed there.

EU Commissioner nods to Slovenian MEPs on Austria's border checks

BRUSSELS, Belgium - European Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson responded on Monday to a public letter from five Slovenian MEPs on Austria's decision to extend controls at the border with Slovenia, according to a document received by the STA. In her reply, she agreed with the EU court that such checks can only be a measure of last resort and should be introduced for a limited period of time. She is determined to assess all options to reinstate an area without border checks among Schengen countries.

Slovenia pleased with Council conclusions on energy

LJUBLJANA - Infrastructure Minister Bojan Kumer welcomed agreements on general approaches to the directives on renewable energy and energy efficiency that energy ministers reached as part of the Fit for 55 package. "The agreements are a way for the EU to accelerate the achievement of its objectives," he said. "The EU must address challenges united, accelerate decarbonisation and diversification of energy sources in light of the Russian aggression on Ukraine, and respond properly to the energy price hikes," Kumer was quoted as saying by the ministry.

Minister holds online talks with Slovenians in Germany, US

LJUBLJANA - Minister for Slovenians Abroad Matej Arčon held online meetings with representatives of Slovenian associations in Germany and the US. He invited all of them to actively participate in the European Capital of Culture 2025 project and announced regular meetings on a monthly basis. Under the cultural project, which will be co-held by Slovenia and will provide opportunities for business cooperation, the largest gathering of the Slovenian diaspora, minorities and Slovenians who live in their homeland will take place, the minister announced.

Top court rejects Janša appeal against statute-barring of Patria case

LJUBLJANA - The Constitutional Court has rejected an appeal by former PM Janez Janša against the statute barring of the Patria defence deal bribery case. While Janša felt denied a chance to prove his innocence, the top court claims he had no legal interest, as statute barring is fully equivalent to an acquittal, meaning he is considered innocent. Publishing the ruling, Janša said: "After more than 15 years of the Patria saga the caricature of Slovenian rule of law ended with the pronouncement of innocence".

Covid cases surging, hospital numbers remain low

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia continues to record an increase in coronavirus cases as new cases hit a two-month high of 1,222 on Monday, up by more than 44% in a week. The number of patients hospitalised with Covid as their primary condition remains broadly flat, with 30 in hospital this morning, of which eight in intensive care. Mario Fafangel, the head of the centre for communicable diseases at the National Institute of Public Health, said that the situation was "serious and has to be monitored, but it is not as horrible as it may seem."

Men's handball team gets wild card for World Championship

LJUBLJANA - After failing to qualify for the 2023 Men's Handball World Championship, the Slovenian national team will get to play at the tournament hosted by Sweden and Poland after all, courtesy of a special invitation from the International Handball Federation (IHF). The IHF picked Slovenia along with the Netherlands among five European wild card applicants in a decision that is hailed by Slovenian Handball Association head Franjo Bobinac as a major honour.

28 Jun 2022, 04:17 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Freedom Movement approves merger with LMŠ, SAB

LJUBLJANA - The senior coalition Freedom Movement approved with more than 90% of votes mergers with the non-parliamentary parties the Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ) and the Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) in an online congress. This comes after members of the LMŠ and SAB had already given the green light for the merger. The merger is to be completed in the first half of July, while the first congress of the new party will be held before the local elections in autumn.

Bad bank replaces two executive directors

LJUBLJANA - The non-executive directors of the Bank Assets Management Company (BAMC) dismissed Andrej Lazar and Kristina Šteblaj from their positions as BAMC executive directors and appointed Mitja Križaj and Žiga Pfeifer as acting executive directors to replace them. They will take up their posts on 1 July. Meanwhile, Matej Pirc remains an executive director. The replacements of BAMC executive directors are not unexpected, as they follow recent appointments among non-executive directors.

Psychoanalyst Krajnik enters presidential race

LJUBLJANA - Nina Krajnik, a philosopher and psychoanalyst, announced she is entering the presidential race. She will run as an independent but will accept endorsement by like-minded political parties. Krajnik says her politics is different since she is creating space for "everybody's truth and desire." Her desire is to connect people. "If we do not stand together during crisis, we are never together," she said. Little known before a recent TV interview and described by some as the first alt-right candidate, Krajnik has already been endorsed by some prominent figures on the right.

Govt plans to amend law on seizure of proceeds from crime

LJUBLJANA - The new government intends to amend legislation on the confiscation of proceeds from crime in a manner that will ensure a more effective confiscation of such assets. The plan also involves the creation of a special body that would better manage confiscated assets. The Justice Ministry told the STA that the key for effective confiscation of proceeds from crime was that it is secured in time and temporarily confiscated. The current legal basis is seen as sub-optimal.

PM meets NGOs to launch cooperation

LJUBLJANA - Prime Minister Robert Golob met a number of NGOs, saying afterwards that the first step had been made toward a fruitful cooperation with the civil society. A government needs an active civil society because NGOs work among people and are able to address and resolve issues fast, the prime minister said. The meeting today agreed that the civil society will be invited to cooperate before legislative motions are filed in procedure.

Govt rating at 53% in POP TV poll

LJUBLJANA - The first monthly approval rating of the Robert Golob government stands at 53.1%, about eight points higher than the rating the Janez Janša government had right after it took office, according to a poll run by POP TV. Almost a third of respondents, 31.6%, oppose the current government, whereas just over 15% are undecided. The Freedom Movement polled at 28.4%, down almost two points on the month before, with the Democrats trailing at 18.9%, down almost a point.

Parliament discusses opposition bills, communicable diseases act

LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly started a week-long session dominated by several dozen bills the opposition tabled on the opening day of the new parliament. Government amendments to the communicable diseases act and the first parliamentary inquiry are on the agenda as well. While the coalition is expected to vote down all opposition bills, the long-awaited amendments to the communicable diseases act will be passed given that this was one of the pledges of the coalition parties during the election campaign. Voting starts on Wednesday.

Interior minister pledges politics will not use police for its interests

LJUBLJANA - Politics must never again overpower the police force or abuse it for its particular goals, Interior Minister Tatjana Bobnar said as the country observed Slovenian Police Day. She intends to restore the public's trust in the force and has also apologised for what she sees as unacceptable actions under the previous government. The police will no longer work for politics but for the community, she said, expressing the wish for cooperation with civil society.

Minister notes unity in support for more ambitious green goals

BRUSSELS, Belgium - Following a meeting of the EU Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council, where more ambitious green energy and energy efficiency targets were endorsed, Infrastructure Minister Bojan Kumer noted that the unity displayed at the ministerial underlined the importance of endorsing the entire Fit for 55 package. Responding to the final green light for new rules on gas storage, he said the discussion made it clear that this time the bloc really needed a coordinated, unified European approach.

Minister meets Slovenians in Croatia, notes importance of learning Slovenian

RIJEKA, Croatia - Minister for Slovenians Abroad Matej Arčon visited Rijeka for his first official visit to the Slovenian community in Croatia. Arčon said the Government Office for Slovenians Abroad would like to be proactive in setting clear goals for the next four years together with members of the community. One of the objectives will be promoting the Slovenian language and culture in Croatia.

Top court says mask and hand disinfection mandate unconstitutional

LJUBLJANA - The Constitutional Court added the mask mandate introduced by the previous government in closed public spaces in 2020 to the list of unconstitutional measures related to the epidemic, again stressing that legislative changes as opposed to only decrees were necessary for such interventions. The measures were lifted during the court's deliberation of the case, but the court said it decided to deliver a ruling nevertheless also because the case could become relevant again.

Slovenian Business Club sending humanitarian aid to Ukraine

LJUBLJANA - The Slovenian Business Club (SBC) and the Rdeča Žoga Foundation, founded by entrepreneur Joc Pečečnik, sent a humanitarian convoy with food and basic necessities to Ukraine. SBC members have raised over EUR 100,000 to help those affected by the war. Two truckloads of food and emergency supplies were deployed to the Mukachevo collection centre. From there, the aid will be sent out to those most in need.

Covid cases keep rising, but hospital figures low

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia is in the midst of a growing new wave of Covid with the latest statistics showing cases steadily rising, even as hospital figures continue to decline. A total of 461 cases were confirmed over the weekend, more than double the figure recorded last weekend. One person with Covid died. As of this morning there were 30 persons in hospital with Covid as their primary condition, down from 36 a week ago, of which six are in intensive care, down from five.

Tjaša Andree Prosenc awarded Olympic Order

LAUSANNE, Switzerland - Tjaša Andree Prosenc, a former figure skater and roller skater and long-time member of the executive board of the Olympic Committee of Slovenia (OKS), was awarded the Olympic Order to become the fourth Slovenian to receive this honour. She received the Olympic Order, conferred by the International Olympic Committee, for her outstanding contribution to the Olympic Movement.

27 Jun 2022, 04:50 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Slovenian author Marwan receives Austrian literary prize

KLAGENFURT, Austria - Ana Marwan, a Slovenian author who lives and works in Austria, is the recipient of this year's Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, a prestigious prize for works in German conferred by the city of Klagenfurt. She has received the prize, which comes with a EUR 25,000 cheque, for Wechselkröte, a piece about a woman who lives alone in a rural area and finds out she is pregnant.

Garnbret continues winning streak

INNSBRUCK, Austria - Olympic gold medallist Janja Garnbret won the World Cup lead event in Innsbruck on Sunday, becoming the first competitor to notch up 33 World Cup wins in climbing. Wile she did not reach the top, her score of 39+ was enough to beat the American Brooke Raboutou and the South Korean Chaehyun Seo, both of whom scored 27+.

Slovenian minority in Austria hosting Europeada

EBERDORF, Austria - The Slovenian minority in the Austrian state of Carinthia is hosting this year's Europeada, a football championship of minority groups held under the auspices of the Federal Union of European Nationalities. Held in a monastery in Dobrla Vas/Eberndorf and under way between 25 June and 3 July, it has been co-organised by by the National Council of Carnthian Slovenians and the Slovenian Sports Union from Klagenfurt.

26 Jun 2022, 04:39 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Pahor says new government could have long-term prospects

LJUBLJANA - In an interview with the public broadcaster TV Slovenija on Frida, President Borut Pahor has talked about the international circumstances, noting that the government is in for deliberation about how to remain an ally in helping Ukraine, while wisely "regulating sanctions so that we can help ourselves". He also spoke about the long-term prospects of the new cabinet, saying it had a solid political majority that made it possible to "look a little bit further into the future", and saying that Prime Minister Golob has the required ability and intelligence.

Slovenia received many congratulations on Statehood Day

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia received congratulations from world leaders on Statehood Day, with President Borut Pahor getting messages from Queen Elizabeth II, US President Joe Biden, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and French President Emmanuel Macron, among others. Pahor also received messages from Spanish King Felipe VI, King Philippe of Belgium and Japanese Emperor Naruhito, and the leaders of the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Finland, Switzerland, Egypt, Georgia and Kenya.

President hands out two state decorations on Statehood Day

LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor conferred the Golden Order of Merit on Ludvik Toplak, a former rector of the University of Maribor, and Roberto Battelli, a former MP for the Italian minority, at a ceremony that also marked Statehood Day. Toplak was honoured for "outstanding contribution to the democratisation and independence of Slovenia and its promotion internationally and in the academic circles." Battelli received the decoration for his work and contribution to the development of democracy in Slovenia and for his merits in connecting and preserving the Italian minority in Slovenia, the president's office said.

Fajon to visit Berlin and Zagreb soon, new ambassadors to stay

LJUBLJANA - In an interview with the STA, Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon expressed the hope that the war in Ukraine would end as soon as possible and announced a visit to Berlin as a sign of return to the core EU countries. She will also work on having good relations with Croatia, which is however unlikely to join the Schengen Area any time soon. Asked about the government's announcement of revision of the appointments of ambassadors by the previous, Janez Janša government, Fajon said that the appointments had been approved at all levels and there was no legal basis for recalls.

First Slovenian president, PM would like to see more unity

LJUBLJANA - On the occasion of the 31st anniversary of independence, Slovenia's first President Milan Kučan and first Prime Minister Lojze Peterle said they would like to see more unity of the nation. Kučan, who served as the president of the republic in 1991-2002, said that "when people feel that there is no unity between what people think and what politics does, big projects do not even start, let alone are concluded." Peterle, who served as prime minister in 1990-1992, said he would like to see politicians be able to stand together on essential issues, and more dialogue and more high political culture.

US assistant secretary of state to visit Slovenia

WASHINGTON, US - Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Michele Sison will pay a visit to Vienna, Rome and Ljubljana, the US Department of State announced on Friday, but it has not yet revealed when exactly the visit will take place. In Ljubljana, Sison will meet with Slovenian officials "to discuss shared interests at the UN", including Slovenia's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council from the beginning of 2024 to the end of 2025.

Štore Steel posts record sales for 2021

ŠTORE - Štore Steel, a leading Slovenian steel producer, had a record year in 2021 with EUR 144.6 million in revenue, a 69% increase from the year before and 38% above projections. Profit stood at EUR 6 million, compared to a EUR 2.5 million loss in the year before. Steel sales were 30% higher than in 2020, reaching 145,577 tonnes, which is 7.8% higher than projected. The average price of steel was EUR 991 per tonne, said the CEO Jani Jurkošek for the STA. He estimates that the increased revenue is mainly due to increased prices of iron and alloys, which represent the variable part of the company's prices.

Number of newborns in Slovenia up one percent last year

LJUBLJANA - A total of 18,984 children were born in Slovenia last year, which is 217 or 1% more than in 2020. The average age of the mother at the birth of her first child was 29.6 years, and at the average age at any birth was 31.1 years, the Statistics Office reported. There were 9,822 newborn boys and 9,162 newborn girls last year, and the number of newborns per 1,000 residents in 2021 was nine, up from 8.9 in the year before. On average, 52 children were born every day, which is one more than in 2020. There were 264 pairs of twins, with 84 pairs of boys and 91 pairs of girls.

25 Jun 2022, 04:40 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Golob sees "important step" taken for Bosnia

BRUSSELS, Belgium - While Slovenia did not succeed with its proposal that Bosnia-Herzegovina be granted EU candidate status along with Ukraine and Moldova at the EU summit, PM Robert Golob said an "important step" had nevertheless been taken since the country has been put back on the EU's agenda. Golob said Bosnia had been "plucked back from a kind of oblivion" in which it had spent several years, and now the EU leaders have a rough time frame in which the topic will be back on the agenda. FM Tanja Fajon also said the proposal opened a very important debate and showed proactivity and unity.

Prime minister to visit Germany in July, hopes for good relations with all neighbours

LJUBLJANA - Prime Minister Robert Golob has told Delo that his first official bilateral visit will be to Germany in the first half of July. He also indicated Slovenia was in no hurry when it comes to the border arbitration agreement with Croatia. He said many European countries had open issues with their neighbours. "The award of the arbitral tribunal is a fact and any debate about that is unnecessary. The agreement will be implemented sooner or later, and we wish that Croatian politics slowly accepted that," he said.

Slovenian NGO wins 2022 European Citizens' Prize

BRUSSELS, Belgium - The Legal Network for the Protection of Democracy, a Slovenian network of NGOs that has played a major role in challenging controversial government restrictions during the Covid pandemic is among the recipients of this year's European Citizens' Prize conferred by the European Parliament. It has received the recognition for a project supporting individuals and organisations in the use of legal means to challenge measures, procedures and policies that are unlawful, unconstitutional and undemocratic.

Strategic council united that Ukraine war should end ASAP

LJUBLJANA - The Foreign Ministry's strategic council held its maiden session to discuss the Ukraine war. After an almost three-hour debate, Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon said that despite some differences in views, all members agreed the war should end ASAP. She also revealed she would meet her Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba in July. A key message was that Slovenia and the EU must remain united in their responses to the Ukraine crisis. Fajon asserted Slovenia would continue to help Ukraine "wherever possible"

Parliamentary committee opposes referendum on RTV Slovenija

LJUBLJANA - The Culture Committee rejected an opposition-sponsored motion to call a referendum on the changes to the RTV Slovenija act which would make the now mandatory RTV Slovenija licence fee voluntary. The Democrats (SDS) filed the motion in mid-May after tabling the bill in parliament. The motion delayed the final decision on the changes by the then emerging coalition led by the Freedom Movement, which intended to vote them down in parliament.

Digital minister discusses immersive tech at EU event

TOULOUSE, France - Slovenia's Minister for Digital Transformation Emilija Stojmenova Duh attended the annual EU Digital Assembly in Toulouse, France in the middle of this week. Taking part in a panel on immersive technologies in Europe, the minister said such technologies had an immense potential and their use would only increase in the future. The Government Office for Digital Transformation quoted her as saying that immersive technologies enabled a more friendly access to the virtual world.

Activist petitioning for referendum on govt restructuring bill

LJUBLJANA - Political activist Vili Kovačič launched a petition for a referendum on a bill that would allow the prime minister to shape the cabinet as he sees fit. The changes, expanding the number of ministries by three, are a disgrace for democracy, he said, adding he would call on PM Robert Golob to withdraw them from procedure. He intends to challenge all coalition-sponsored bills passed in parliament in the future.

Clashing responses to US overturning Roe v Wade in Slovenia

LJUBLJANA - Responding to the US Supreme Court's decision to overturn the landmark Roe v Wade ruling that guaranteed the constitutional right to abortion, two Slovenian organisations displayed opposite views. The feminist NGO 8 March Institute condemned the decision, whereas the March for Life civil initiative, an anti-abortion organisation, welcomed it.

Melamin accident did not cause pollution in Kočevje

KOČEVJE - Analyses of samples taken from the soil near chemical plant Melamin in Kočevje, south Slovenia, which was devastated by a massive explosion in mid-May, have shown no signs of soil pollution, the Environment Agency said. "No substances connected to the explosion or Melamin's operations were found in any of the samples ..." said the report. Samples were taken from the soil on the day of the accident and the day after by Talum Institute.

Tourist arrivals in May up three-fold year-on-year

LJUBLJANA - A total of 461,000 tourist arrivals were recorded in tourist accommodation facilities in Slovenia in May, which is over three times more than in the same month last year. The number of overnight stays generated by tourists in May was meanwhile up by 258% to 1.137 million, the Statistics Office said. The number of tourists from non-European countries increased significantly.

Business sentiment down in June

LJUBLJANA - Business sentiment in Slovenia dropped by two percentage points in June over May, reaching 0.8 percentage points. Compared to June 2021, the sentiment dropped by 7.1 percentage points. All confidence indices affected the sentiment, with manufacturing lowering it by 0.6 percentage points, consumers by 0.5 points, services by 0.4 points, construction by 0.3 points and retail by 0.2 points.

Coronavirus case count up 40% on a weekly basis

LJUBLJANA - The number of new coronavirus infections, at 645 on Thursday, was up by almost 40% on a weekly basis. Hospitalisation numbers remained stable, while one Covid-19 patient died, the fresh official statistics show. The 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 of the population increased by 17 to 298, and the 7-day case average is at 536, up by 25 on a daily basis.

Koper police bust two international criminal gangs

KOPER - In cooperation with the Italian authorities, the Koper police dismantled two internationally-organised criminal gangs involved in smuggling and trafficking large quantities of illegal drugs. They arrested eleven suspects and seized several kilograms of cocaine and cannabis and over EUR 60,000 in cash, the Koper Police Department said.

Tour of Slovenia attracts huge crowds both in person and on TV

LJUBLJANA - The Tour of Slovenia road cycling race that took place last week produced some impressive viewership numbers, as it was seen in person by some 300,000 people, while almost 11 million people saw it on the Eurosport TV network, which is 1.5 million more than last year. The race was also a big hit on social networks.

24 Jun 2022, 07:55 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Golob and Zelensky have first talk, Ukraine's candidacy in focus

LJUBLJANA/KYIV, Ukraine - Prime Minister Robert Golob had his first conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday, with the talk focusing on the status of an EU candidate country that is expected to be given to Ukraine at today's EU summit. The Slovenian government said on Twitter that Golob assured the Ukrainian president that although there had been a change of government in Slovenia, the country's attitude towards Ukraine had not changed. A post by Zelensky said that the Ukrainian president "expressed gratitude for the readiness to support granting Ukraine the status of a candidate for accession to the EU."

Golob hopes for consensus on Bosnia candidate status

BRUSSELS, Belgium - Arriving for an EU summit, Prime Minister Robert Golob expressed the hope that EU leaders will reach a consensus on giving Bosnia-Herzegovina candidate country status at the summit as he dismissed reports by some media that Slovenia is willing to block Ukraine's bid to achieve that. "There has been no talk about a blockade, nor has there been any need to," he said on arrival at the summit about reports by some foreign media that Slovenia and Austria would block the adoption of summit conclusions unless Bosnia-Herzegovina gets candidate status.

Justice Committee endorses declaration on war crimes in Ukraine

LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Justice Committee unanimously endorsed a draft declaration on the European Parliament's resolution on fighting impunity for war crimes in Ukraine, which was tabled by the opposition Democrats (SDS). The committee voted for the motion a day after the government endorsed the resolution. The EU parliament's resolution calls on the EU to take all the necessary measures to support prosecution of those who have committed crimes against humanity in Ukraine.

Slovenia stresses its opposition to Austria's border checks

LJUBLJANA - Interior Minister Tatjana Bobnar reiterated Slovenia's position of opposing Austria's border checks on their joint border nearly a fortnight after an Austrian administrative court decided that the border checks, which have been in place since 2017, are unlawful. Such control of the border can only be of limited duration and must be in line with the principle of proportionality, Bobnar said after a government session, adding that Austria's actions were inadmissible.

Golob attends summit of European Liberals, discussing role of Renew

BRUSSELS, Belgium - PM Robert Golob, the leader of the Freedom Movement, took part in a summit of leaders from the liberal Renew group in the European Parliament on the sidelines of an EU summit in Brussels today. He said they had agreed it might be time for Renew to be at the forefront of European change as the strongest political movement.

Verbal communication allowed between prosecution, police once again

LJUBLJANA - The government changed a regulation laying down the cooperation between the police and the prosecution and other bodies in pre-trial procedure, abolishing a restriction that allowed prosecutors to communicate their orders to the police only in written form. The restriction was put in place by the previous government.

Supervisors in nine hospitals replaced due to poor financial results

LJUBLJANA - The government has replaced members of the supervisory boards of nine hospitals due to the institutions' poor financial performance and will carry out a special audit to see how they continue to post losses despite receiving hundreds of millions of euros in extra funding last year. The aim is to stabilise their finances and make sure they emerge from the red by the end of the year, Health Minister Danijel Bešič Loredan told the press after a cabinet session.

Lawyer Pirc Musar announces presidential run

LJUBLJANA - Lawyer Nataša Pirc Musar, best known in her former role as information commissioner, announced she would enter the presidential race in the autumn election as an independent, becoming the first candidate to formally announce her bid. "For several years I've had this desire to do something in Slovenian society and politics and the role of president would fit like a glove," she told the press. To run as an independent, Pirc Musar must collect 5,000 voter signatures. While she plans to formally run as an independent in any case, she says she is not averse to discussing receiving support from political parties.

Govt abolishes two duties to cut diesel prices along motorways

LJUBLJANA - The government adopted two regulations to temporarily abolish two environmental duties on diesel at service stations on the motorway network, where prices are fully liberalised. The measure to lower the price of diesel to help hauliers will take effect when published in the Official Gazette, on Friday at the earliest. It is designed to cut the price of diesel along motorways - where it has topped EUR 2 a litre since liberalisation kicked in on Tuesday - to the level outside motorways, currently at EUR 1.848.

No foul play detected by inspectors at service stations

LJUBLJANA - Checks carried out by market inspectors at service stations across Slovenia in the aftermath of severe fuel shortages have not produced indications that fuel retailers intentionally kept supplies low to take advantage of higher prices after the transition to a new price regulation model. The inspectors found there were severe jumps in fuel sales the weekend before the new pricing model took effect, according to chief market inspector Andreja But.

Brussels opens in-depth investigation into MOL's acquisition of OMV Slovenija

BRUSSELS, Belgium - The European Commission said it had opened an in-depth investigation to assess Hungarian energy group MOL's purchase of service stations of OMV Slovenija, the second largest such network in Slovenia. Brussels is worried that the takeover would severely reduce competition on the Slovenian retail motor fuel market. MOL signed a EUR 301 million contract in June 2021 to acquire a 92.25% stake in OMV Slovenija while it already holds the remaining 7.75% stake through Croatia's INA. The deal means MOL - with 53 filling stations the third largest fuel retailer in Slovenia - would get another 120 stations around the country.

Govt secures more staff to care for Ukrainian children in Postojna

LJUBLJANA - The government has secured more staff to help Ukrainian guardians take care of the 20 children from a Luhansk orphanage who are temporarily staying in the village of Slavina near Postojna. A vehicle will also be purchased for transporting children to different institutions and activities. The government made the decision after calls were made for more staff to attend to the orphans, aged between one and seven, who arrived in Slovenia accompanied by their guardians and their children in early May.

Panel discusses ways of transposing EU copyright directive

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia is behind in implementing the EU directive on copyright on the single digital market, which covers areas such as publishing, journalism, education and the audio visual industry, so panellists at Thursday's STA-hosted discussion called on the authorities to finally regulate this field. Slovenia's audiovisual industry is worth over EUR 200 million a year, employs 2,500-3,000 staff, has a 1.8 multiplier effect and, comparatively speaking, is on a par with Norway, film producer Danijel Hočevar said.

Sava Re shareholders to get EUR 1.50 dividend

LJUBLJANA - The shareholders of insurance company Sava Re approved the proposal of the management and supervisory boards to distribute EUR 23.3 million from last year's distributable profit of EUR 37.05 million for dividends. The dividend will amount to EUR 1.50 gross per share, and the rest of the distributable profit will remain unallocated.

Property prices in Slovenia continue to rise in Q1

LJUBLJANA - Property prices were up 4.1% in the first quarter of this year compared with the previous quarter and up 16.9% year-on-year, the Statistics Office said. The prices of resale flats and houses have been rising continuously on a quarterly basis for more than two years. In the first three months of 2022, they went up by 5.2% - resale flat prices by 5.5% and resale house prices by 4.7%. Geographically-wise, resale property prices rose the most in Maribor, by 6.9%, followed by the rest of Slovenia, up 6.3%, and Ljubljana, up 5.3%. Prices of new residential property declined after five consecutive quarterly increases.

Govt urged to draft bill on protection of whistleblowers

LJUBLJANA - Transparency International Slovenia urged the government to fulfil a pledge made before the general election to pass an effective law on whistleblower protection within the first year of the government's term. Whistleblowers must be protected to help fight corruption and ensure a higher level of democracy, it said on the occasion of World Whistleblower Day. The new law must do more than just transfer the EU directive on the protection of whistleblowers into Slovenian legislation, it added.

Govt does not support mandatory drug testing for office holders

LJUBLJANA - The government said it did not support an opposition-sponsored bill that would require MPs, ministers, state secretaries as well as the prime minister and the president of the republic to undergo mandatory annual drug testing. The bill excessively interferes with individual privacy, the Government Communications Office said.

Covid case count up nearly 40% week-on-week

LJUBLJANA - A total of 763 people tested positive for coronavirus in Slovenia on Wednesday, up by 39% over the same day a week ago. There were no additional Covid deaths and hospitalisations remained stable, fresh official figures show. The number of patients treated for Covid-19 as their main condition in hospitals totalled 39, including six who needed intensive care, which is a slight increase on the day before. Compared to the same day a week ago, hospitalisations were up by seven.

Number of travels up by more than 50% in first quarter

LJUBLJANA - The first quarter of 2022 in Slovenia saw the overall number of travels increase by over 50% year-on-year, the Statistics Office reported, noting that 22% of Slovenians over the age of 15 opted for at least one private trip. Slovenians over the age of 15 made some 976,000 travels in total between January and the end of March. The number of private travels rose by 14 percentage points year-on-year, and by 17 percentage points compared to 2020, with 377,000 people going on at least one trip.

Roman Rozina's Hundred Years of Blindness declared best novel of the year

LJUBLJANA - The winner of the 32nd Kresnik Prize for best novel of the year, given out by the publisher Delo, is Roman Rozina. He convinced the jury with his historical novel Sto Let Slepote (Hundred Years of Blindness), portraying the Knap family and the rise and fall of mining in the 20th century. The other four nominees were Davorin Lenko with his novel Triger, Andrej E. Skubic with Krasni Dnevi (Wonderful Days), Dušan Šarotar with Zvezdna Karta (Star Map) and Marjan Žiberna with Dedič (Heir).

Ana Desetnica brings street theatre to 13 cities

LJUBLJANA - The Ana Desetnica street theatre festival will open today, taking place until 3 July in 13 Slovenian cities, with most events being held in Ljubljana, including the opening event and the birthday party. Having first started in the capital 25 years ago, the festival will bring shows to 12 other towns this year, including Maribor, Ptuj, Kamnik, Logatec and Nova Gorica. Almost 100 artists from 10 countries will travel between the cities for 11 days to perform 37 shows and urban interventions.

Speaker advocates minority rights during visit to Klagenfurt

KLAGENFURT, Austria - Parliamentary Speaker Urška Klakočar Zupančič visited Klagenfurt to mark 30 years since Slovenia opened its general consulate in the city. She underlined the importance of Article 7 of the Austrian State Treaty, which guarantees the rights of the Slovenian minority. Addressing the ceremony, she said that "suitably regulated and implemented minority safeguards were a key standard of democracy in modern societies, and they must be continually developed and improved".

Minority radio station gets access to Radio Slovenija shows, assistance

LJUBLJANA - Radio Monošter, a Slovenian minority radio station in Hungary, has entered cooperation with Radio Slovenija that enables it to broadcast shows of the Slovenian public radio broadcaster. The contract was signed on Wednesday, a day before the radio station from the town of Szentgotthard/Monošter, celebrates 22 years since it went on air. It gives Radio Monošter access to all Radio Slovenija shows, including the music archives, as well as to Slovenian language training and other assistance.

23 Jun 2022, 04:48 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

National Assembly paves way for reshaping of govt

LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly passed changes to the government act allowing Prime Minister Robert Golob to shape his government as he wants as it deflected an attempt by the opposition Democrats (SDS) to hold a referendum on the act. While Prime Minister Robert Golob has said the restructured government should be in office by the end of summer, the SDS indicated it might mount another referendum attempt, this time gathering signatures from citizens instead of going the parliamentary path. Freedom Movement deputy group leader Borut Sajovic said that a new referendum attempt would make it clear even to the most naive that this was intentional troublemaking.

Pahor: Russian aggression confirmed need for highly trained army

LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor said the Russian aggression against Ukraine had confirmed the need for Slovenia to have a highly trained and professional army, as he addressed via video call Slovenian soldiers serving in missions. Pahor, supreme commander of the Slovenian Armed Forces, noted this was the first time that the videoconference with troops serving abroad was being held amid a war in Europe.

Works council urges RTV Slovenija director general to resign

LJUBLJANA - The works council at public broadcaster RTV Slovenija urged director general Andrej Grah Whatmough to "step down immediately and irrevocably", presenting a number of reasons for its decision, which was taken on Tuesday, a day after RTV staff went on strike as the talks following the 23 May strike brought no major progress. Grah Whatmough has been urged to resign due to breach of legislation, poor management, and "numerous irregularities and reasonable suspicion of unlawfulness and of having exceeded his powers".

Committee urges end to pressure on editorial autonomy at RTV

LJUBLJANA - The Culture Committee has called on the management of RTV Slovenija to consistently ensure the constitutional right to information, to immediately stop undermining the editorial independence and autonomy of the public broadcaster, and to restore conditions for independent journalism. The management should also stop implementing politically-motivated personnel and other changes, and stop discrediting RTV staff or exerting pressure on them, follows from resolutions adopted at a session.

Remains of over 500 victims killed post-WWII near Brežice excavated

BREŽICE - The remains of at least 529 people executed in post-WWII summary killings have been unearthed from an anti-tank trench in Mostec near Brežice, east Slovenia, according to the Military Heritage Administration. Archaeological excavation at the site was carried out due to construction of a chain of power stations on the river Sava. In 2020, the remains of at least 276 people were found in some 20 metres of trench. This year's excavation work on another 30 metres to reveal the remains of at least another 253 people.

Farmers propose govt buy all Slovenian wheat

LJUTOMER - A multi-stakeholder commission for cereals proposed that the government purchase all wheat Slovenian farmers will harvest this year, and then sell it on to millers during the year. Slovenian farmers will grow 100,000 tonnes of wheat suitable for food in 2022, the commission's head Franc Küčan said. There are foreign buyers interested in Slovenian wheat, but Küčan said that "farmers would like to sell Slovenian wheat to Slovenian millers." If the price is not right, they will sell to whoever is willing to pay more.

Archbishop wants continuation of Church-state dialogue

LJUBLJANA - Ljubljana Archbishop Stanislav Zore expressed the wish for a continuation of the dialogue between the state and the Roman Catholic Church as he berated previous governments for not showing willingness to address all open issues. "There has never been a concrete willingness to address all the remaining open issues," he said during a sermon at a mass celebrating the anniversary of Slovenian statehood. "Hopefully the government which has now taken the reign in Slovenia will find the willingness to tackle open issues."

Covid curve bends upwards

LJUBLJANA - Covid cases continue to grow as Slovenia enters a new wave of the pandemic. Health authorities reported 670 new cases for Tuesday, up by nearly 50% over the week before, as the share of positive PCR tests exceeded 6%. While the incidence has been increasing at a brisk pace - the 14-day case notification rate per 100,000 population is at 260 compared to 189 a week ago - hospital numbers remain subdued, according to the National Institute of Public Health.

30 years of Slovenia-Australia diplomatic relations marked

CANBERRA, Australia - The Slovenian Embassy in Canberra marked the 30th anniversary of Slovenian-Australian diplomatic relations and the upcoming Slovenian Statehood Day earlier this week. The reception was attended by more than a hundred of Australian officials, diplomats, representatives of both Slovenian and Australian organisations and other guests. The event featured a performance by the Australian Army Band Corps.

Minister for Slovenians Abroad meets Community in Austria

KLAGENFURT, Austria - Minister for Slovenian Abroad Matej Arčon travelled to Klagenfurt for his first official visit with the Slovenian community in Austria as minister. After a meeting with key community representatives, Arčon underlined the importance of regular dialogue and thanked the various organisations for their devoted work. Arčon met with Valentin Inzko of the National Council of Carinthian Slovenians, Marjan Sturm of Association of Slovenian Organisations in Carinthia and Heribert Kulmesch of the Community of Carinthian Slovenians.

Unior sells stake in Romania's Unior Tepid for EUR 2.5m

ZREČE - Unior, the Zreče-based tool maker and automotive supplier, last week reached a EUR 2.5 million deal with a Romanian buyer for the sale of its 49% stake in Unior Tepid SRL, Romania, the Slovenian company said. Unior signed the sale contract a week ago, on 15 June, and the buyer, Unior Tepid CEO Dan Dabuleanu, paid the purchase price a day later, reads the press release.

Two SSH supervisors dismissed

LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly dismissed two supervisors of the Slovenian Sovereign Holding (SSH) a week after the government said that Božo Emeršič and Leon Cizelj did not meet the requirements for the job. The former no longer qualifies because he has been appointed the CFO of railway builder 2TDK in April 2021, while the latter never satisfied the job requirements in the first place, not having had the required 10 years of experience in management.

Consumer confidence drops further in June

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's consumer confidence in June decreased by two percentage points on the month before and 16 percentage points year-on-year in what is a decline for the second month in a row, the Statistics Office said. The decrease in the confidence indicator at the monthly level was driven by more pessimistic consumer expectations about the financial situation in households (down by four points), the current financial situation in households (down by three) and the country's economic situation (down by two).

Wages in private sector down in April

LJUBLJANA - Slovenians earned an average net salary of EUR 1,304.32 in April, up by 0.2% in nominal terms and 2.7% in real terms compared to March, shows fresh data from the Statistics Office. Average gross earnings for April totalled EUR 2,001.93, down by 0.3% in nominal terms and down by 2.8% in real terms compared to March, with a rise of 1.2% in the public sector and 3.3% in the state administration, while the private sector experienced a fall by 1.1%.

Court hands down suspended sentences in Tušmobil abuse of office case

CELJE - Businessman Mirko Tuš and his wife Tanja Tuš received suspended prison sentences after pleading guilty to abuse of office and money laundering charges. Mirko Tuš got a two-year suspended prison sentence with a three-year probation and a fine of 450,000 EUR. Tanja Tuš got a suspended prison sentence of one year with a two-year probation plus a fine of EUR 90,000. The case concerned the transfer between 2011 and 2016 of the Tušmobil mobile telephony brand that was reported by creditors as an attempted fraud.

Supreme Court acquits 2014 torture case defendant

LJUBLJANA - The Supreme Court acquitted Milan Trivković, one of four men found guilty of abducting and brutally torturing Zorica Škrbić, a 32-year-old woman whose abduction and death in June 2014 shocked Slovenia. Trivković will sue the state for damages for the five years he spent in detention and in prison, news portal siol.net reported. Trivković has maintained his innocence in several court proceedings, while his friends said he was hosting a party at the time of the crime.

Hailstorms rage in parts of the country, most damage in the south-east

LJUBLJANA - Hailstorms once again raged in parts of Slovenia on Tuesday evening, causing most destruction in the south-eastern and northern parts of the country. In some parts, the hail stones almost reached the size of a tennis ball. Municipalities that were hit most severely were Hoče-Slivnica, Lenart, Laško, Radenci, and Novo Mesto, along with Črnomelj, Metlika, and Semič.

22 Jun 2022, 04:59 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

MPs reject referendum on changes to government bill

LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly rejected in a 52:23 vote the opposition Democrats'(SDS) proposal to consult voters in a referendum whether the government should restructure its departments and expand them or not. The SDS opposes the plan to increase the number of ministries to 20, arguing public spending will also increase, while the coalition says the reorganisation will help the government to be more responsive and efficient to the benefit of the country. Now that the referendum is off the table, the changes to the government act will be discussed at an emergency session of the National Assembly on Wednesday.

Petrol prices on motorways up by 20 cents

LJUBLJANA - The prices of petrol and diesel at service stations along Slovenian motorways, which are completely deregulated as of today under the new fuel pricing model, went up by roughly 20 cents a litre compared to those at stations outside the motorway network, which are fully regulated. Regular petrol now costs EUR 1.851 at Petrol's and EUR 1.944 at OMV Slovenia's service stations, while diesel costs in excess of EUR 2 per litre.

Watchdog looking into Petrol, OMV over fuel shortages, report says

LJUBLJANA - The competition watchdog is launching an investigation into whether Petrol and OMV Slovenija, the country's two largest fuel retailers, have abused their dominant market position in recent days as there were fuel shortages right before a new pricing regime kicked in, the news portal Necenzurirano reported. The Competition Protection Agency (AVK) will check whether Petrol and OMV Slovenija, which control the vast majority of the market, have abused their position by filling storage tanks under their petrol stations too slowly or by deliberately emptying them in recent days.

Slovenia changes Ukraine aid policy, continues advocating for Bosnia

LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary EU and foreign affairs committees outlined Slovenia's foreign policy for the future, with PM Robert Golob saying after the closed session that Bosnia-Herzegovina should get immediate EU candidate status and that Slovenia would help Ukraine with demining in the future. He added that the proposal for Ukraine and Moldova to become EU candidate countries was a clear message to the two countries that they can count on EU membership. Golob believes that Bosnia-Herzegovina deserves to receive the same message from the EU Summit this week.

FM Fajon tells Ukrainian counterpart she will visit Kyiv soon

LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg - Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon spoke over the telephone with her Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba on Tuesday assuring him of Slovenia's support for Ukraine's EU candidate status and the country's post-war reconstruction. She also announced that she will visit Kyiv soon, the Slovenian Foreign Ministry tweeted. "Slovenia is committed to helping Ukrainian citizens to live in peace again as soon as possible. We will also help rebuild infrastructure and restore stability and hope."

High-ranking police officers sacked over hiring violation

LJUBLJANA - The new police commissioner sacked two high-ranking police force members, with 24ur.com reporting they had been involved in a contentious hiring of an employee in which security check results had been falsified. The General Police Administration said the sacking involved an employee at the Koper Police Department and an officer working at the General Police Administration. The newspaper Dnevnik reported that the matter involved the Koper Police Department chief Boris Korasa and the head of the General Police Administration's Internal Investigations and Integrity Sector Metod Jerman.

Petrol says price regulation to affect annual results

LJUBLJANA - Fuel price regulation in Slovenia and Croatia will affect energy company Petrol's business in the first half of the year, so the Slovenian group does not expect to achieve the planned results, its management said in a statement posted on the website of the Ljubljana Stock Exchange, where Petrol stock has suffered significant losses today.

Pahor nominates Court of Audit head, central bank vice-governor

LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor has nominated Jana Ahčin for Court of Audit president and Milan M. Cvikl for a vice-governor of the central bank after completing consultations with parliamentary groups' heads last week and establishing both candidates enjoy the necessary support. The candidates will need at least 46 votes to get elected in a secret ballot.

Old Slovenian tanks en route to Ukraine, report says

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia donated 35 Yugoslav-era armoured combat vehicles to Ukraine, which crossed the Slovenian border on Monday evening and are expected to reach western Ukraine via Poland today, the 24ur news site reported. In return, Slovenia is to receive a credit from the US to be used for equipment needed by the Slovenian Armed Forces (SAF) in their operations.

Patrik Greblo appointed acting director of TV Slovenija

LJUBLJANA - After rejecting the candidacy of RTV Slovenija journalist Urban Laurenčič for the position of director of TV Slovenija (TVS), the public broadcaster's TV arm, the RTV programme council endorsed the appointment of music advisor Patrik Greblo as TVS acting director. Greblo, a journalist, conductor, composer, arranger of popular music and the director general's music advisor, will assume the job on Wednesday for a maximum of one year or until the appointment of a full-fledged TVS director. Andrej Grah Whatmough, RTV Slovenija director general, intends to publish a new call for applications as soon as possible.

No assets of Russian citizens frozen in Slovenia

LJUBLJANA - The Slovenian Foreign Ministry told the STA it had no information of assets of any Russian citizen under the EU sanctions being frozen in Slovenia since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine. The ministry is in charge of implementing the law on restrictions Slovenia introduces in line with legal acts and decisions adopted by international organisations.

Elaphe stepping up international cooperation

LJUBLJANA/SAN DIEGO, US - Elaphe, a Ljubljana-based maker of in-wheel electric motors, is stepping up cooperation with foreign partners. It has signed a cooperation agreement worth hundreds of millions of euros with Aptera Motors, a US start-up that builds solar e-vehicles, and intends to work with Dutch company Lightyear on the latter's new vehicle.

Covid case count up by 33% week-on-week

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia reported 838 new coronavirus infections for Monday, up by 33% in weekly comparison, in what continues to be a steady increase in Covid cases. The total of patients treated for Covid-19 as their main condition in hospitals is at 37, including five in intensive care, shows data by the Health Ministry. No Covid-related deaths were reported yesterday.

Slovenia to build two European Digital Innovation Hubs

LJUBLJANA - Two European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIH) will be set up in Slovenia, the European Commission decided upon evaluating applications in the first call of the DIGITAL Europe Programme. The government Office for Digital Transformation announced that the EDIH projects went to the consortia DIGI-SI of Maribor University and SRC-EDIH of the Novo Mesto Development Centre. EDIHs will function as one-stop shops helping companies respond to digital challenges and boost their competitiveness.

Experiment crates for kids win Startup of the Year Award

LJUBLJANA - Inno Lab, the company that makes crates providing tools for a variety of experiments aiming to make children interested in physics, mathematics and IT, was declared the best startup in Slovenia for this year. Inno Lab took part in the TV competition Štartaj Slovenija in 2020 and now it is launching international sales of the Innobox through Italian Amazon. The shortlist for the Start:Up 2022 award included companies DeltaHub, Epidemic, mPOR and SaleSqueze.

Slovenian American on front line of fight against cancer

NEW YORK, US - Andreja Čerček, a Slovenian-American oncologist with the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in the US, is on the front line of the fight against cancer. After co-authoring a study on experimental treatment of early-stage rectal cancer with immunotherapy, she hopes that these findings could be applied to treatment of other cancers. News of a successful rectal cancer treatment that completely eradicated the disease in all twelve participating patients is making headlines in the US and around the world.

New architecture platform LINA launched in Ljubljana

LJUBLJANA - A new architecture platform LINA was launched in Ljubljana on Monday, connecting 28 European and Mediterranean organisations. Its representatives gathered for a two-day general assembly in Plečnik's House. LINA, a continuation of the project Future Architecture, aims to support the work of young architects with research, prototype creation and exchange of know-how as well as promote environmentally friendly construction. It hopes to mobilise the European architectural sector for clean, circular and sustainable projects in line with the New European Bauhaus initiative.

Ljubljana Festival opens with tribute to pop song lyrics

LJUBLJANA - The 70th Ljubljana Festival, one of the most high-profile festivals in the country, opened in Congress Square with a tribute to the Slovenian poets who have contributed lyrics for some of the most memorable Slovenian pop songs, especially in the 1960s and 1970s. The Summer Night concert coincides with the 60th anniversary of Slovenian Pop Song, a festival that has produced some of the best Slovenian Golden Oldies. Twenty-three songs will be sung by 13 singers.

Storm in NE Slovenia uncovers roofs and topples trees

MARIBOR/SLOVENJ GRADEC - The regions of Štajerska and Koroška in north-eastern Slovenia were hit by a violent storm on Monday evening that uprooted many trees, uncovered roofs and damaged other infrastructure, the Administration for Civil Protection and Disaster Relief has reported. The largest number of firefighter interventions were needed in the municipality of Maribor, where according to the fire brigade commander Primož Osojnik they were mostly removing fallen trees, but also temporarily repairing roofs and removing light debris.

21 Jun 2022, 07:18 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

Fajon presents proposal on Bosnia's EU candidate status to EU counterparts

LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg - Slovenia's proposal that the EU should grant Bosnia EU candidate status as soon as possible received a great deal of support and, above all, a great deal of understanding at today's meeting of EU foreign ministers, Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon said after she outlined it to her counterparts at a session of the Foreign Affairs Council. Some met it with approval while it took others by surprise, she said adding "it's important to send a political signal that Slovenia is promoting the enlargement process in the region and that it will not forget these countries", while it also strongly support awarding the candidate status to Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia.

Pahor urges support for Bosnia's EU candidate status

RIGA, Latvia - President Borut Pahor urged the leaders of Three Seas EU countries to endorse Slovenia's proposal at the EU summit later this week to give Bosnia the status of EU candidate country, as he addressed the summit of the Three Seas initiative in Latvia. He reiterated the importance of the EU's prompt expansion to the Western Balkans, saying he is convinced the candidate status will strengthen the pro-European forces in Bosnia and accelerate the pace with which the country adjusts to EU standards. Some leaders explicitly supported Slovenia's proposal, while nobody openly disagreed with it, which gives hope the necessary consensus could be reached for the EU summit to endorse it.

PM outraged at fuel shortages, economy minister assures country has enough fuel

LJUBLJANA - As drivers rushed to service stations in anticipation of Tuesday's price hike, which resulted in many service stations running out of fuel, Economy Minister Matjaž Han assured the public the country has sufficient reserves of fuel. He attributed the problem to logistics, but said market inspectors are on the ground examining whether fuel retailers might not comply with the rules. PM Rober Golob, on the other hand, finds the situation scandalous, saying the retailers should have foreseen the rise in demand and prepare for it. Energy company Petrol chairman Nada Drobne Popovič denied the shortages were created by fuel retailers to profit from higher prices on Tuesday. If the current level of demand continues, shortages could not be eliminated before Friday or even later, she said, explaining that all available fuel trucks have been working since Wednesday.

Petrol prices to rise more than 10% on Tuesday

LJUBLJANA - The prices of regular petrol and diesel at pumps outside motorways will rise by nearly 20 cents a litre on Tuesday. Regular petrol will cost EUR 1.755 a litre, up from EUR 1.56, while diesel will cost EUR 1.848 a litre, compared to EUR 1.668 at the moment. The new prices will remain in place until 4 July when they are adjusted again. Fuel prices in Slovenia have been unchanged since May 11, when the previous government capped them amid rapidly growing energy prices. Last week, the new government reintroduced for a year as of 21 June a system of price margin regulation at service stations outside the motorway network, while completely liberalising the prices along motorways.

RTV Slovenija staff on strike urge decision-makers to protect broadcaster against political interference

LJUBLJANA - RTV Slovenija journalists continued the strike they first staged on 23 May, ending the day with a rally protesting against political interference and calling on decision-makers to act. The public broadcaster's heads meanwhile ordered that news shows be radically short or cancelled today, a move the staff see as an attempt to undermine the strike. The strike committee said RTV Slovenija director general Andrej Grah Whatmough and TV news programme editor-in-chief Jadranka Rebernik "have interfered gravely with our strike", adding that this was a criminal offence. The programme council was to discuss the director general's plan to severely cut the international network of correspondents, which the staff and journalist organisations oppose, but rescheduled the session to tomorrow.

Ministry concerned about RTV, announces legislative changes

LJUBLJANA - As the in-house trade unions at RTV Slovenija went on strike at 2pm after talks on their demands following the 23 May strike brought no progress, the Culture Ministry expressed concern over the situation at the public broadcaster. Minister Asta Vrečko announced legislative changes to give more decision-making power in the broadcaster's bodies to the civil society and staff rather than politics. She also said the ministry supported the strike, noting the announcement of the abolition of the international network of correspondents was cause for concern.

NLB bank well prepared for turbulent times, chairman says

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia's largest bank NLB is in excellent shape and well prepared for turbulent times ahead, chairman of the board Blaž Brodnjak said after today's shareholder meeting. He is also not concerned by the tightening of monetary policy in the eurozone. When necessary, households and companies will be assisted, he announced. "If companies should have liquidity problems, we will know how to approach and restructure them. And we will try to do the same for households if they have difficulties in paying out their loans." As for possible acquisitions, he said nothing concrete was on the table, but estimates that opportunities will arise in several markets in the region.

SAB endorses merger with Freedom Movement

LJUBLJANA - The membership of the non-parliamentary Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) endorsed the party's merger with the ruling Freedom Movement as they cast their votes during a 13-15 June congress that was held remotely. 91.5% of the members that attended the congress voted for the merger, the SAB said. The ongoing consolidation of the liberal block includes another non-parliamentary party, the Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ), which has already endorsed the merger. The Freedom Movement will now hold a congress to endorse the consolidation with the two parties.

Slovenia still attractive to German investors despite challenges

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia remains attractive for German companies, mainly due to its geostrategic location and skilled workforce, shows this year's survey of German chambers of commerce in 15 countries in Central and Eastern Europe. Meanwhile, criticism is levelled at Slovenia's rigid labour legislation and high labour costs. the Slovenian-German Chamber of Commerce's president Dagmar von Bohnstein said the economic impact of the Covid pandemic and Russia's attack on Ukraine have reduced the expected growth rate for this year to 3.9%, but 68% of German companies in Slovenia are still satisfied with the economic situation and consider it good.

Coronavirus infections up over the weekend

LJUBLJANA - A total of 325 new coronavirus infections were confirmed in Slovenia over the weekend, which is a 56% weekly increase. No Covid patient has died since Friday, the Health Ministry said. Latest reports from hospitals show that 36 Covid patients were at regular Covid wards and five in intensive care during the weekend. The 7-day average case count is at 398 and the 14-day incidence per 100,000 of the population at 227.

Expert: Covid cases higher than test numbers

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia has seen an increase in the number of coronavirus cases recently, yet the official figures have remained relatively low, with only 325 new infections confirmed over the weekend, but infectologist Mateja Logar said the actual number of infections is likely three to four times higher. Logar, who used to head a government-appointed task force for coping with the pandemic, said this was due to scaled-back testing and advises easier access to testing.

Govt and public sector unions set agenda, priorities for pay talks

LJUBLJANA - The government and public sector trade unions met to start pay talks, which both sides would like to end as soon as possible, expectedly in the autumn. The meeting set the format of talks and priorities, said Public Administration Minister Sanja Ajanović Hovnik, head of the government's negotiating team. The unions want a prompt agreement on holiday allowance and on the value of individual pay brackets. The other two issues are extremely low wages at the bottom third of the pay scale and disrupted wage ratios between various professions after some sector secured pay rises. The talks will start in earnest in early July.

World Refugee Day marked by calls for appropriate migration policy, inclusion

LJUBLJANA - Officials dealing with refugee issues in Slovenia called for safe migration policies and inclusion of migrants on World Refugee Day, observed today. Interior Minister Tatjana Bobnar said a new national migration strategy would be based on the respect for fundamental freedoms and human rights and ensuring safety for all. Human Rights Ombudsman Peter Svetina said World Refugee Day was an opportunity for sympathy with the distress of refugees and their aspirations to lead a normal life.

Illegal crossings of border up by 75% in first five months

LJUBLJANA - Slovenian police recorded 4,333 attempts at illegal crossing of the border in the first five months of the year, which is 75% more than in the same period last year, when 2,466 such attempts were recorded. Afghanis account for almost a quarter of those intercepted, the police statistics show. In the first five months of 2022, the number of intentions to submit a request for international protection was four times higher than in the same period last year, totalling 3,798.

Effective work accounts for 69% of working time in Slovenia

LJUBLJANA - In 2020 Slovenian employees spent 68.7% of their available working time effectively working, while absence from work accounted for 26.9% of their working time and meal breaks 4.4%, the Statistics Office has reported. The effective working time of employees in Slovenia amounted to 69% in the private sector and 67% in the public sector. The working time structure has changed drastically since 2016, when absence from work represented 18.6% of total working time.

20 Jun 2022, 03:54 AM

Check the date at the top of the page, and you can find all the "morning headlines" stories here. You can also follow us on Facebook and get all the news in your feed.

This summary is provided by the STA:

 Slovenia wants Bosnia to get candidate status at next week's EU summit

BRUSSELS, Belgium - Slovenia has produced a proposal to grant Bosnia-Herzegovina EU candidate status as early as at the EU summit next week, which will be attended by PM Robert Golob. Under the proposal, Bosnia would have to adopt the laws set out in the political agreement reached by Bosnian political parties at talks in Brussels a week ago before accession talks could start. Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon is expected to present it to her EU counterparts at Monday's session of the Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg. President Borut Pahor is meanwhile expected to seek support for it at the Three Seas initiative summit in Latvia on Monday.

Tadej Pogačar wins his second Tour of Slovenia

NOVO MESTO - Slovenia's star rider Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) won the 28th Tour of Slovenia to defend the title from last year, as he won the last, fifth stage on Sunday between Vrhnika, central Slovenia, and Novo Mesto, SE. The 23-year-old two-time Tour of France winner finished the Slovenian race ahead of his Polish teammate Rafal Majka, with Slovenia's Domen Novak (Bahrain-Victorius) finishing third. Pogačar sees the Tour of Slovenia as a good rehearsal before the upcoming Tour de France.

Ambassador Borut Šuklje dies

LJUBLJANA - Diplomat Borut Šuklje has died aged 63 following a long illness, his family said on Sunday. Šuklje served as Slovenia's first ambassador to Serbia and Montenegro after the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, posted there in 2001. In recent years he worked as international adviser on SE Europe and the Western Balkans.

SDS condemns foreign minister's RTV Slovenija appeal

LJUBLJANA - The opposition Democrats (SDS) strongly condemn a letter Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon addressed earlier this week to RTV Slovenija director general Andrej Grah Whatmough urging him to reconsider his plan to cut the public broadcaster's international network of correspondents. The SDS sees her move as unacceptable political pressure.

RTV Slovenija boss urges staff to cancel 20 June strike

LJUBLJANA - RTV Slovenija director general Andrej Grah Whatmough urged the public broadcaster's in-house trade unions to cancel the strike planned for Monday and sign the strike agreement he had offered them in a bid to prevent "irreparable damage to news programmes". The unions responded by saying the strike will go ahead as planned, adding that the appeal is an ultimatum and yet another attempt at preventing and obstructing the strike.

Fuel shortages at service stations before Tuesday's price rise

LJUBLJANA - Owners of motor vehicles headed for service stations en masse as regular petrol and diesel prices are expected to rise considerably when a new pricing model kicks in on 21 June. All three major fuels providers, Petrol, OMV and MOL, experienced occasional shortages today. Demand is additionally driven by numerous tourists filling up as they are returning home from the seaside, especially from Croatia, which has higher fuel prices.

Nearly two-thirds of employers intend to raise wages

LJUBLJANA - Nearly two thirds of Slovenian employers intend to raise wages in the second half of 2022, shows Manpower's survey on wage trends. Employers plan to raise wages to retain or attract employees, with most pay rises planned in IT and tourism sectors.

Heavy traffic, congestion on sunny weekend

LJUBLJANA - Traffic was slow on Slovenian roads throughout the day and the weekend, with long waiting times at some border crossings with Croatia and Austria. The situation was further aggravated by an accident on the busy Primorska motorway near Postojna, SW, with the travel time prolonged by 90 minutes. While the situation calmed at border crossings in the south-west, queues at some border crossings in the south-east and east of the country remained long well into the afternoon. It for instance took as long as four hours to enter Slovenia from Croatia at Gruškovje.

Cukrarna hosts charity auction for Ukraine's Kharkiv

LJUBLJANA - The Cukrarna art gallery will host a charity auction on Monday evening to raise funds for post-war reconstruction of the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv. Up for sale will be iconic Lupina (Shell) chairs made by Slovenian industrial designer Niko Kralj with a new touch by a number of visual artists. The "reworked" chairs are already on display at Cukrarna.

Page 7 of 122

Photo galleries and videos

This websie uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.