Ljubljana related

15 Jul 2020, 13:30 PM

STA, 15 July 2020 - The average gross earnings in May amounted to EUR 1,892.31, down by 2.3% on April nominally and by 3.2% in real terms. The average net wage was EUR 1,244.44, a 1.7% and 2.6% decrease respectively on April, show data released by the Statistics Office on Wednesday.

Year-on-year, average gross earnings increased, in nominal terms by 9.5% and in real terms by 10.8%. The increase was largely the result of temporary stimulus measures related to the Covid-19 epidemic, which were also in place in April.

Compared to April, average gross earnings in May decreased in both sectors, in the private sector by 2.5% and in the public sector by 2.2%. In the institutional sector general government they decreased by 1.9%.

The highest average gross earnings for May were paid in electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply (EUR 2,589.33).

Compared to gross earnings for April, average gross earnings for May increased the most in public administration and defence, compulsory social security (by 7.0%) and decreased the most in accommodation and food service activities (by 8.0%).

If average gross earnings for May were calculated by the number of persons in paid employment on the basis of paid hours and not on the basis of the number of persons in paid employment, they would be higher than gross earnings for April in public administration and defence, compulsory social security by 4.8% and in accommodation and food service activities by 1.0%.

More detailed data can be found here

10 Jul 2020, 12:06 PM

STA, 10 July 2020 - Slovenia's exports decreased by 6% to EUR 13.2 billion in first five months of the year, while imports fell by 11.5% to EUR 12.5 billion, show Statistics Office data released on Friday. In May, exports were down by 19.8% year-on-year to EUR 2.38 billion and imports by 22.4% to EUR 2.21 billion for an export to import ratio of 107.8%.

Slovenia recorded an external trade surplus in all of the first five months of 2020, the surplus in all five months combined amounting to EUR 726.9 million. In this period, the export to import ratio was 105.8%.

As for May, the office noted that the year-on-year decrease was smaller than in April, when exports were down 28.8% year-on-year and imports by 41.2%.

It said the negative effect of the epidemic on external trade in goods had been reduced somewhat, while adding the significant annual decline in April was also due to exceptionally high value of imports in April last year.

In May the export to import ratio was 107.8%; a surplus of EUR 172.1 million was generated in external trade in goods. The May external trade surplus is the second highest this year and the highest of the four May surpluses recorded after 2010.

Exports to EU member states in May amounted to EUR 1.53 billion (down 29.0% year-on-year) and imports to EUR 1.51 billion (30.7% less).

imports exports slovenia jan may 2020.JPG

"Trade with this group of countries grew continuously from October 2016 until the second half of last year, when the effects of economic cooling began to show. The epidemic negatively affected trade with the EU already in March 2020 and even more in April and May," the Statistics Office wrote.

As for trade with countries outside the EU, Slovenia exported goods worth EUR 848 million in May (up 4.5% y/y) and imported goods worth EUR 693.9 million (up 5.0%).

"Since the end of 2018, we have been recording high growth rates of trade with this group of countries, the trend continued in May, however the growth was significantly reduced by the epidemic."

More on this data can be found here

26 Jun 2020, 19:52 PM

STA, 26 June 2020 - The National Institute for Public Health (NIJZ) has highlighted on the occasion of International Day against Drug Abuse the problem of widespread cannabis use among Slovenian adolescents. An international study places Slovenia among the countries with the highest shares of 15-year-olds using cannabis.

The institute pointed to the 2018 HBSC (Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children WHO collaborative cross-national survey) report that showed an average of 13% of 15-year-olds in the 45 participating countries have already used cannabis. The share for Slovenia is 21%, which ranks the country 7th, the NIJZ said.

Related: Talking with the Slovenian Cannabis Social Club (SKSK) About Its Aims & Achievements

Slovenia fares even worse when it comes to 15-year-olds who have used cannabis in the 30 days before being quizzed for the survey. The international average is 7%, while it is 13% in Slovenia, which places the country only behind Canada and Bulgaria.

The NIJZ listed relative ease of access as one of the reasons for widespread use of cannabis among Slovenian youngsters. The survey has half of the 15-year-old Slovenian respondents assessing they could obtain cannabis easily or very easily within 24 hours.

Related: Learn Slovenian With Cannabis

The institute stressed the importance of preventive activities, such as equipping young people with proper social, emotional and behavioural skills, and measures aimed at reducing access to drugs, while stressing the use of cannabis among young people is harmful for brain development.

"Research has shown that with children and youngsters cannabinoids affect the development of the part of the brain responsible for the processing of received information and for thought processes helping solve problems and taking decisions. With regular use, these capacities are reduced, especially for those who start using this drug before the age of 18," Ada Hočevar Grom of the NIJZ warned.

Moreover, some research links the use of cannabis to poorer school performance and to the increased risk of the abuse of other drugs and addiction.

Related: Ljubljana Ranks High in European Consumption of Cocaine and MDMA, in Mid-Range for AmphetaminesLjubljana Ranks High in European Consumption of Cocaine and MDMA, in Mid-Range for Amphetamines

26 Jun 2020, 10:29 AM

STA, 23 June 2020 - A total of 19,328 children were born in Slovenia in 2019, 1.3% fewer then the year before, but the birth rate remained at 1.61. The number of deaths, at 20,588, exceeded the number of births for the third year running, show data released on Tuesday by the Statistics Office.

This is the second year in a row that fewer than 20,000 children were born in Slovenia after the figure had been exceeded for ten consecutive years prior to 2018.

At 9,977, the number of boys born fell short of 10,000 for the first time in 12 years. The number for girls, already below 10,000 in 2016, was 9,351.

One of the reasons for the declining number of births in recent years lies in an increasing number of women putting off the decision to have their first child. The average age increased again last year, to 29.6 from 29.5, while this compares to 23 three decades ago.

births 2019 ages.JPG

This also pushes up the average age of the mothers of newborns in general - it was 31.1 last year, while it stood at 25.9 in 1989.

Another reason is the decline in the birth rate seen in the 1980s and 1990s, which has led to a lower number of women aged between 25 and 34 at present.

Meanwhile, the parents of 57.7% of the 2019 newborns were not married. 16,175 children were born to parents who both had Slovenian citizenship and 1,339 to parents neither of whom had Slovenian citizenship.

Luka was the favourite name picked for boys for the 21st year running, being given to 2.8% of the newborns, while Zala made it back to the top among girls with 2.9%.

births 2019 names.JPG

Meanwhile, the number of the deaths increased by 0.5% compared to 2018. The average age of the deceased exceeded 78 for the first time last year, reaching 78.1. It was 73.9 for men and 82.1 for women. In the last decade, the average for men increased by 3.8 years and for women by three years.

According to the Statistics Office, boys born last year can expect to live until they are 78.5, while the life expectancy for girls is 84.2. In the last ten years, the figures have increased by 9.1 and 7.1 years, respectively.

The share of so called premature deaths, meaning before the age of 65, was 16% last year - 22.4% among men and 9.8% among women. The gap between men and women in this category has been shrinking in the last decade. In 2009 the share for men was 30.8% and for women 12.4%.

The infant mortality rate last year was 2.1 deaths per 1,000 live births. The rate has been decreasing in Slovenia in the last decade and is among the lowest among EU member states.

More stories on demographics in Slovenia, while you can see more on births in Slovenia in 2019 here

25 Jun 2020, 13:53 PM

STA, 25 June 2020 - Slovenia's population is ageing, while the number of residents is increasing on the back of immigration, show data for the 1991-2020 period published by the Statistics Office to mark Statehood Day. The state of the Slovenian economy is improving since the country declared independence, as are connections with foreign markets.

Marking Statehood Day on 25 June, the day in 1991 when Slovenia declared independence from Yugoslavia, the Statistics Office said that on 1 January 2020, Slovenia had 2,095,861 residents or 15,000 more year-on-year.

There were 1,051,066 men and 1,044,79 women, with men outnumbering women primarily because of the growing number of immigrants, who are mostly men.

Slovenia's population has been increasing in the last 25 years, as has its average age. At the beginning of 2019, the average age of a Slovenian resident was 43.4, which is two years more than ten years ago. A fifth of Slovenians are aged 65 or older.

Following the declaration of independence, Slovenia's economy experienced a blow as it lost the ex-Yugoslav market, introduced market economy and faced a high inflation rate. It was almost 250% in 1991, and it took four years to drop below 10%.

In 1991, Slovenia's gross domestic product (GDP) dropped in real terms by 8.9%, and by a further 5.5% in 1992. After a longer and relatively stable period, it was down by 7.8% in 2009 at the peak of the global economic and financial crisis.

Up until this spring, the Slovenian economy was recovering at an annual pace of between 3% and 5%. In the first quarter of 2020, the country's GDP was meanwhile down by 2.3% compared to the same quarter last year.

In the first quarter of the year, the very end of which was also marked by the coronavirus epidemic, foreign and domestic demand was also down.

In terms of GDP per capita, Slovenia placed 16th last year among the 28 EU member states.

Germany has remained Slovenia's most important trade partner all these years, while within the EU, Slovenia's trade with Austria increased the most. Outside the EU, Slovenia has exported most of its goods to the countries of the former Yugoslavia and to China.

In the 1991-2020 period, the Statistics Office recorded the highest unemployment rate in the first quarter of 2011, at 11.1%, while the lowest rate, at 4%, was recorded in the last quarter of 2019, when only 41,000 persons were unemployed.

The number of tourists visiting Slovenia has been mostly increasing since 1991, reaching a record 6.2 million last year. The figures are expected to be much lower this year as tourism was ground to a halt in mid-March and is still recovering.

You can see more on these statistics here

22 Jun 2020, 10:53 AM

STA, 21 June 2020 - Slovenia still lags behind the EU-27 average in actual individual consumption per capita and in GDP per capita, which reached 81% and 88% of the 2019 average, respectively, the EU's early figures, released by Slovenia's Statistics Office (SURS), show.

SURS released Eurostat's preliminary figures for 37 European countries, showing that actual individual consumption per capita - an indicator of material prosperity of households - ranged from 59% to 135% of the EU average.

Slovenia's actual individual consumption in 2019 was two percentage points above the country's 2018 figure.

Closest to Slovenia in actual individual consumption was Malta (80% of the EU average), and Poland and Romania (both 79%).

GDP per capita slovenia 2020.png

The differences among the 37 European countries were even bigger in GDP per capita, an indicator of economic activity, which ranged from 53% to 261% of the EU average.

GDP per capita in Slovenia has been rising, up one point in 2019 over 2018, in what was the fourth consecutive annual rise. Closes on the list to Slovenia last year were Cyprus with 89% and Spain 91%.

Luxembourg fared best in both indicators, which are expressed in purchasing power standards, and Albania worst.

Actual individual consumption and Gross domestic product per capita in purchasing power standards, volume indices, European countries (EU-27=100), 2019

Country Actual individual consumption
per capita
Gross domestic product
per capita
European union (EU-27) 100 100
Euro area (EA-19) 106 106
EU-27    
Luxembourg 135 261
Germany 123 121
Austria 118 127
Denmark 116 129
Belgium 115 117
Netherlands 114 128
Finland 113 111
Sweden 112 120
France 109 106
Italy 99 95
Ireland 97 191
Cyprus 95 89
Spain 91 91
Lithuania 90 82
Portugal 86 79
Czechia 85 92
Slovenia 81 88
Malta 80 99
Poland 79 73
Romania 79 69
Greece 77 68
Estonia 75 84
Slovakia 73 74
Latvia 71 69
Hungary 67 73
Croatia 66 65
Bulgaria 59 53
     
United Kingdom 115 105
     
EFTA Member states    
Norway 128 144
Switzerland 124 153
Iceland 119 130
Candidate countries for EU    
Turkey 68 61
Montenegro 60 50
Serbia 49 41
North Macedonia 43 38
Albania 40 31
Potential candidate country for EU    
Bosnia and Herzegovina 42 32
Source: Eurostat (http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat, 18. 6. 2020)
14 Jun 2020, 19:10 PM

There were 6,672 marriages and 2,476 divorces registered in Slovenia in 2019 according to the newest report by the Statistics Office (SURS). The number of marriages fell 8% compared to 2018, while divorces rose 5.5%. There were also 54 same-sex marriages registered in 2019.

Grooms were on average 36.9 years old at the time of marriage and almost three years older than brides were, with the latter on average 34.0 years old in 2019.

Most marriages were made between citizens of the Republic of Slovenia (80.8%).  In 583 of the newly wed couples (8.7% of all marriages), the groom was a citizen of the Republic of Slovenia and the bride a citizen of another country, most often Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 514 marriages (or 7.7% of the total), the bride was a citizen of the Republic of Slovenia and the groom from another country, again most commonly of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 185 marriages (2.8%), both the groom and the bride were foreign citizens.

In 2019, 2,476 couples divorced, or 129 (5.5%) more than in 2018. The average age of the newly divorced men was 46.8 years, and that of divorced women 43.9 years. The marriages of these couples lasted on average 14.3 years until the divorce, although 40 couples divorced in the first year of marriage.

In 1,261 divorces (50.9%) the couples had no dependent minor children, while in the remaining 1,215 (or 49.1%) divorces there were a total of 1,980 dependent minor children who were also part of the divorce procedures.  The majority of these children, 67.9%, were assigned to their mothers, 5.3% of children were assigned to their fathers and 24.3% to both parents.

People who divorced in 2019 were mostly citizens of the Republic of Slovenia (83.5%). In 162 divorces (or 6.5%), the husband was a citizen of the Republic of Slovenia and the wife a citizen of another country. In 211 divorces (or 8.5%), the wife was a citizen of the Republic of Slovenia and the divorced husband from another country. In 35 divorces (or 1.4%), both divorced spouses were foreign nationals.

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11 Jun 2020, 15:57 PM

STA, 11 June 2020 - Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša has hit back at European Economy Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni following his appeal for explanation over the dismissal of the Statistics Office's director by suggesting he was playing a political game for the Slovenian left.

 "I didn't receive your letter, but press did," Janša tweeted after the STA reported yesterday that Gentiloni sent a letter to Janša asking him to explain the replacement of the head of the Slovenia's Statistics Office.

"@govSlovenia replaced a political appointee as Statistics Office head with an expert with 30 y of experience in this Office. Hope this is the last time you play a political game for Slovenian left," Janša added in his tweet, which he also tagged to Ursula von der Leyen, the European Commission president.

Asked by the STA for its response to Janša's tweet, the European Commission's press service said Gentiloni's letter was transmitted by email to Slovenia's Permanent Representation to the EU at 17:52 on Tuesday, 9 June, for onward transmission to the prime minister.

"Addressing the letter to Prime Minister Janša via the Permanent Representation is in line with standard practice," said a commission spokesperson.

The Commission said yesterday that Gentiloni addressed a letter to Janša on Tuesday to request "some clarifications concerning the recent replacement of the Director-General of the State Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia".

Asked about what prompted the letter, the Commission said it "is committed to ensuring that the principles of impartiality and professional independence of national statistical authorities as laid down in EU legislation are fully respected".

Janša's tweet invited response from several Slovenian MEPs, including Tanja Fajon, the acting leader of the opposition Social Democrats (SD), who tweeted: "Janša's response is indecent: when there's no arguments, attack and denigration. This government has damaged Slovenia's reputation."

Tagging a retweet of her earlier tweet about Gentilioni's letter, Janša had also taken aim at SD staff: "Slobbering in Brussels, biting at home (...) bowing to those above, pressing those under".

Romana Tomc, a MEP for Janša's Democratic Party (EPP/SDS), joined the back and forth on Twitter by supporting the prime minister in a tweet saying that Gentiloni's move was obviously politically-motivated, and ignited by political players.

"It's utterly odd that the commissioner should have let the public learn about the letter sooner than the addressee. The government must in no way agree to such a mode of operation by the European Commission," Tomc tweeted.

MEP Irena Joveva (Renew/LMŠ) tweeted that Janša replaced the Statistics Office's director for the first time in Slovenia's history, adding that his accusing Gentiloni "sounds familiar".

Echoing the sentiment expressed by Fajon, Milan Brglez (S&D/SD) described Janša's tweet as indecent. "After a series of foreign policy 'mistakes' now indecent behaviour by Janez Janša. Following the principle 'what can they do about it anyway'. Quo vadis, Slovenia."

The government dismissed Bojan Nastav as director of the Statistics Office in late May, appointing Tomaž Smrekar as acting director for up to six months until a new director is named.

In response, the Statistics Council, an expert advisory body, has asked the Constitutional Court to review the dismissal after obtaining a legal opinion that found the government invoked a wrong piece of legislation for the dismissal.

Janša said in late May that Nastav's replacement was necessary "due to responsiveness". "This is about a body functioning in a professional fashion, being responsive, so that we can rely on getting data tomorrow if we need it."

11 Jun 2020, 10:21 AM

STA, 10 June 2020 - The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) says in its latest forecast for Slovenia that the country's gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to shrink this year by 7.8% this year, or as much as 9.1% in the event of a second wave of coronavirus infections.

For 2021, the OECD expects that Slovenia's economy will grow by 4.5%, or by 1.5% in the event of another Covid-19 outbreak, the organisation says in the forecast published on Wednesday.

It says that the Covid-19 epidemic in Slovenia has manifested itself in a "historically large drop in consumer confidence and business sentiment, which only recently have begun to recover."

The OECD notes that the tourism sector is the worst affected, and also hard hit is road transport, although activity of the latter has started to recover.

For this and other related reasons, the OECD estimates that the output loss in the first half of 2020 will be at 13% year-on-year.

The unemployment rate is expected to reach 6.4% this year, or 6.9% in the adverse scenario, and next year to stand at 5.4% or 8.1%, respectively.

"To avoid higher long-term unemployment, it is important that active labour market policies focus on the hard-to-employ job-seekers by providing adequate job search support and skills upgrading," the report for Slovenia says.

Measured with the harmonised index of consumer prices, the inflation rate for this year is expected to stand at 1% under both scenarios, and at 2% or 1.7%, respectively, next year.

The OECD says that the Slovenian government has adopted a number of fiscal measures amounting to almost 4.5% of the country's GDP, but notes that additional measures should be taken to secure long-term sustainability of the economy.

In addition to the prevention of long-term unemployment, the measures include avoiding a "further increase in the already relatively high share of state-owned enterprises, which are present across all sectors."

As for a potential second wave, the OECD says that, a more selective approach to economic relief and support should be applied to allow more businesses to remain open and this should be combined with protection of vulnerable groups.

The report also touches on the Slovenian healthcare system, saying that while its efficiency compares favourably with peers, structural problems in the sector raise concerns about inefficiencies in cost, quality and safety.

The OECD notes "the low and uneven density of GPs" and "the relatively low ratio of intensive care beds to population", which may raise capacity concerns if the pandemic comes back in a more virulent form.

You can explore the OECD data here

11 Jun 2020, 10:07 AM

STA, 10 June 2020 - European Commissioner for Economy Paolo Gentiloni has addressed a letter to Slovenia's Prime Minister Janez Janša, asking him to explain the changes at the helm of Slovenia's Statistics Office, the Commission's press service confirmed for the STA on Wednesday.

The letter was sent to Janša yesterday with the aim to provide complete compliance with the principles of impartiality and professional independence of national statistics offices, the press service said.

The move comes after the government dismissed in late May director general of the Statistics Office Bojan Nastav and appointed Tomaž Smrekar acting director general. The latter will serve until a full-fledged director is appointed but no longer than six months.

Related: Was the Director of Slovenia’s Statistical Office Dismissed for Following the Law?

Earlier this month, the Statistics Council, an expert advisory body, asked the Constitutional Court to review the dismissal of Nastav.

The council is not sure which law applies in this case - the one on public sector employees, which allows the government to dismiss a top public sector employee a year after the employee started their job, or the national statistics act.

Janša said in late May that the dismissal of Nastav was necessary "due to responsiveness". "This is about a body functioning in a professional fashion, being responsive, so that we can rely on getting data tomorrow if we need it."

SURS has a great website, in English, here

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