The Slovenia Times

Coalition partnership to be sealed by week's end


After the relevant bodies of the Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) and the Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) formally confirmed the parties' participation in the coalition on Friday, the Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ), the Social Democrats (SD) and the Modern Centre Party (SMC) are expected to do the same on Monday.

These votes are deemed mere priorities at this point. What remains open are the names of candidates the LMŠ is to put forward to lead some of the key departments, including finance, the interior and health.

While the other parties have already released the names of their candidates in the 14-member cabinete, the LMŠ seemed to be struggling in finding the right people for the four departments considered the most demanding of all.

Šarec wishes that the current finance minister, Andreja Vraničar Erman, who is not a member of any party, would stay on. However, she has made a demand of her own: that the fiscal rule be included in the coalition agreement. Another possibility for the finance minister could be Andrej Bertoncelj.

Former boss of the health care insurer Samo Fakin is tipped to be the most likely health minister. He has expressed interest in this post in a statement for the STA on Friday, but said that the decision was in Šarec's hands.

The name of the next interior minister is also not clear yet. Last week, media reports suggested that State Secretary Boštjan Šefic could assume the post, but he denied the reports.

Meanwhile, public broadcaster TV Slovenija reported last night that the LMŠ was to put forward for interior minister Boštjan Poklukar, the head of the Kranj Regional Information Centre of the Civil Protection and Disaster Relief Administration.

Despite the unknowns, Šarec has said that he would send a list of ministerial candidates to the National Assembly by Friday after having met the candidates in the first half of the week.

The other parties have meanwhile already announced the names of the candidates they propose for the minority government.

The SMC, which is leading the outgoing government, has nominated its president and outgoing Prime Minister Miro Cerar for foreign minister. It also proposes that Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek stay on for another term.

Moreover, it has nominated Ksenija Klampfer, a state secretary at the Public Administration Ministry, for minister of labour, the family, social affairs and equal opportunities, and Infrastructure Ministry State Secretary Jure Leben for minister of the environment and spatial planning.

The SD proposes that former Education Minister Jernej Pikalo return to the same office, that outgoing Defence Minister Andreja Katič become justice minister, and that the director of Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet, Dejan Prešiček, take over the culture department.

DeSUS meanwhile proposes its president Karl Erjavec for defence minister, a job he has already held several years ago. The party wants Aleksandra Pivec, a state secretary at the Ministry for Slovenians Abroad, to take over the Agriculture Ministry.

SAB president Alenka Bratušek is meanwhile set to become the minister of infrastructure. The party also nominated Jožef Česnik, the oldest serving MP, to take over the Office for Slovenians Abroad and Marko Bandelli, an MP and former mayor, to become the next minister of development and EU cohesion policy.


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