Economy committee mostly happy with 2020 and 2021 budgets
State Secretary Aleš Cantarutti said the budgets would allow the department to follow its mission of boosting competitive edge of Slovenian companies and helping them adapt to the demands of global economy.
In 2020, the Economic Development and Technology Ministry is to get EUR 132.5 million. The figure is EUR 10 million higher year-on-year, as funds for investment projects of municipalities are to go up from EUR 35 million to EUR 45.4 million.
The Tourism Board (STO) is to get EUR 11 million in 2020 and a million more the year after that. While Cantarutti praised STO's work, MPs Franc Kramar of the Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) and Suzana Lep Šimenko of the Democrats (SDS) criticised it for advertising only a handful of destinations, while others were left by the wayside.
Moreover, the ministry is to get EUR 9 million for incentives to investors in 2020, about a million less than this year. In 2021, the number is to climb to EUR 15 million, according to Cantarutti.
He also said that some investors were being very careful due to uncertainties in the European markets despite expressing serious interest in coming to Slovenia.
Boštjan Koražija, an MP for the Left, was critical that the subsidies to companies have reached EUR 381 million this year, EUR 53 million more than last year, whereas they are to increase by another EUR 81 million in 2020.
"The state should take on an active role in development policy and make sure that development served public interest and not the private interests of capitalists," said Koražija.
His party colleague Nataša Sukič was critical of lack of measures to help the poor and the elderly in the 2020 and 2021 budgets, but she also welcomed an increase in funds allocated for infrastructure for Roma communities, for which EUR 1.5 million have been allocated for 2020 and EUR 3 million in 2021.