The Slovenia Times

What should be on the priority list of the new government?


Advantage Austria

According to a survey conducted by ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA Ljubljana regarding the current economic conditions in Slovenia, almost two thirds of the questioned representatives of Austrian subsidiaries in Slovenia described the appeal to invest directly into the country as just "average".

One of the reasons for this is that Slovenia has, in comparison to the rest of Europe, one of the strictest and employee-friendly labour laws, whereby the termination of employees becomes excessively difficult and will often result in labour court proceedings.

Similarly, the lack of support by public institutions when it comes to concerns of foreign investors, the very steep progression in income tax, and crime and corruption hold some financiers back from investing in Slovenia. 

Therefore, if the new government wants to strengthen Slovenia as a business location they will need to increase the flexibility of labour laws, raise the level of support of public institutions toward foreign investors, simplify the tax system and continue to pursue crime and corruption.

American Chamber of Commerce - AmCham Slovenia

AmCham Slovenia, together with the other Chambers and business associations in Slovenia (Gospodarski krog), is caling upon the new government to lead a responsible fiscal policy and ensure moderate growth in government expenditure for the purpose of raising the public finance surplus. We are convinced that it is time to adopt key reforms that must address the unfavorable trend of an ageing population and make them more sustainable for the public treasury. In particular, we have in mind health, pension and tax reforms, modernisation of the public sector, and a policy for resolving the human resources gap which includes a modern education policy, greater adaptability of the labour market more appealing for talented individuals and an immigration policy. Only with a moderate approach and reasonable future-oriented measures can we strengthen our competitive advantages and create a stimulating economic environment that will ensure further economic growth, investment, employment and consequently the wellbeing of the citizens of Slovenia.

British - Slovenian Chamber of Commerce - BSCC

The EU structure will bring many changes in the coming years. Businesses are already adapting, as they always do, but they need certainty from the government to be able to plan effectively and continue growing. A strong focus on foreign policy and trade should be two of the main priorities of the new Slovene government. Slovenia continues to be an interesting investment destination for UK companies as they adapt their business strategies due to Brexit and search for opportunities on the continent, so putting more effort in to attracting new investors from the UK can be beneficial for Slovenia. On the other side, the United Kingdom continues to be an attractive market for Slovene export and investment and so achieving good deals on trade, standards and the movement of people is of interest to both the EU and the UK. The Slovene Foreign Ministry and the Ministry for Economic Development and Technology should therefore work hand in hand to make the best deal possible for the EU and the UK, setting the stage for good, post-Brexit cooperation in Europe which will continue to facilitate trade between the UK and Slovenia.

The German-Slovene Chamber of Commerce and Industry - AHK Slowenien

In recent years Slovenia has experienced steady economic growth due to the economic recovery of the European and global markets. In order to stay competitive on a global scale, the Slovene government has to ensure a simulative and progressive economic environment that will satisfy both domestic companies and foreign investors. 

How do Slovenian companies stay competitive with the global players? Our answer is added value in terms of technology. As the driver of the concepts of Industry 4.0 and digitalisation in Slovenia, the German-Slovene Chamber of Commerce and Industry encourages both Slovene and German companies to become familiar with the two concepts and see best practice examples from both countries. Thorough various training (Industry 4.0 for SMEs, Export Manager, etc.), panel discussions and delegations to Germany, we help our members gain first-hand insight into the two principles and become more digitally oriented, whilst still keeping the human in focus.

Our latest survey shows that Slovenia ranks first among the CEE countries in terms of attractiveness for investments by companies with German capital. Nevertheless, in comparison with the competition, Slovenia is still limited by its labour legislation and high rate of income taxation. In order to ensure a stimulating economic environment that will satisfy Slovene exporters and major foreign investors, the new government has to reduce bureaucratic obstacles and reduce labour taxation.

Italian Trade Agency (ICE)

The role of each government is to ensure the long-term sustainability of public finances, to continue, upgrade and boost the country's welfare programs starting with healthcare, education, social and employment policies, and to guarantee a healthy and stimulating economic environment. This should definitely be on the priority list of the new Slovene government. The excellent economic "after crisis" recovery of Slovenia in recent years is a solid base for the implementation of structural reforms concerning labour market flexibility, encouraging innovation and boosting competition. The promotion of economic cooperation and attracting FDI can significantly contribute to the economic development necessary for further economic growth.

French-Slovenian Business Club (FSBC)

Since Slovenia has the opportunity to create and maintain a predictable business environment, the new Slovenian government should start by respecting the principles of the rule of law. The first step should be the necessary tax reform to achieve strong competitiveness in the labour market. This will not be reached by raising taxes and associated contributions on labour costs, but rather by equalising the conditions for citizens with a normative status. We encourage the adoption of tax reform aimed at stimulating value added work and not to increase the tax on profits from capital investment and company profits. We are also facing difficulity in keeping high quality staff in the country because taxation on individuals is presently excessive. In order to motivate our workers we should adopt labour legislation. As the digitalisation era is progressing fast, we need to put more focus on the impact of the following legislation. Suggestions include advanced EIDAS regulations, possible issuing a qualified digital certificate to all citizens, embedded on the ID or the health insurance card, thus facilitating digitalisation of business.

Luxembourg-Slovenian Business Club (LSBC)

by Iztok Petek, NataĊĦa Zajec

The new government is the opportunity to review how Slovenia is doing, where it's going and what the government can do to ensure the conditions for prosperity and sustainable economic growth.

From the LSBC's perspective, the first priority should be small and medium-sized companies as they are the backbone of economic growth and innovation. If Slovenia wants to be attractive for SME's and even attract foreign companies, it should create conditions comparable with the most progressive business environments in Europe.

Slovenia has enormous potential in various investment opportunities. LSBC, with the support of the Embassy of Slovenia in Brussels and Honorary Consulate of Slovenia in Luxembourg, recently presented more than 20 investment projects to the Luxembourg business community. Attractiveness for foreign investments is always a good sign of the economic health of a country, Luxembourg, with EUR 1.5bn, is already the second largest investor in Slovenia.

The policymakers should leave business to do their work and focus more on creating an atmosphere where common goals and common welfare prevails over the partial interest of individuals or elites.


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