The Slovenia Times

Business summit points to key areas for development


Cerar, who sees Slovenia's future as a country with successful economic development and high quality of life, said he was happy that the GZS was seeking ambitious solutions for the future in dialogue with social partners. "The Slovenian government has the very same vision," he stressed.

According to him, the economic growth is in major part the result of the excellent work of businesses. However, all systems in society are codependent and business also requires good infrastructure, quality public administration and education, security and political stability.

He believes that Slovenia has its own potential for growth, but at the same time, international cooperation in investment is required. Pointing to energy efficiency and digitalisations, Cerar added that Slovenia needed to keep up with the world and lead the way where possible.

"I'm optimistic and I believe in our common future ... All has to be designed for the people and not for its own sake, not only for getting richer and projects as such, it has to be designed for a better quality of life," he concluded.

GZS president Boštjan Gorjup, meanwhile, spoke about key goals of the 2018-2025 development partnership. Slovenia must catch up with the more developed EU members by 2025 and become better prepared for the next crisis, he pointed out.

The groundwork is excellent and "we can be optimistic about the future". However, to further improve results, an increase in R&D investment is required to raise the value added per employee and boost exports.

The aim written down in the vision for the economic development by 2025 is to raise the value added per employee from the current EUR 42,000 to EUR 60,000, and the exports to EUR 50bn.

Quality staff and more favourable working conditions, especially for high quality staff, must be ensured to, Gorjup added.

While focus is required on the young, older employees must be considered too, as their numbers are growing.

Both men also turned to changes of tax legislation, with Gorjup calling for more tax reliefs. Pointing to changes pushed through by the government this term, Cerar said that the government would continue with restructuring taxes, but that these steps must be well considered and adopted in social dialogue.

Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek also pointed to improving business environment through tax reform and expressed satisfaction that the participants had moved forward in dialogue and showed they could cooperate.

Focusing on the 2018-2025 development partnership, the participants believe they have made a step in the right direction, aiming to improve the situation for three generations, and that they must now determine the measures to achieve the set goals.

The head of the ZSSS trade union confederation, Lidija Jerkič, welcomed the GZS proposal to also aim to improve the position of employees: "It is a welcome change compared to the usual forecasts by business about higher GDP, higher profit and better conditions for business, expressed in numbers. This time people are in the forefront after all."

People are more important than anything else, stressed Labour Minister Anja Kopač Mrak. She added that only trust among social partners will take Slovenia to where it wants to be.

Today's guidelines were also discussed by MPs, whose comments ranged from calls for tax reliefs and calls for adapting the education system to the needs of the economy, to repeated calls for increasing investment in R&D.


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