The Slovenia Times

Committee hears drawing of EU funds has improved


"The drawing is not ideal yet, but has improved considerably. With the three most productive months ahead, we expect it to further significantly improve by the end of the year," said Nevenka Ribič from the Government Office for Development and Cohesion Policy.

While the report covers the period until the end of June, Ribič presented to the MPs figures until the end of August.

From January 2014 until the end of August 2019, decisions worth EUR 2.52 billion, or 82% of all EU funds available, were made on the co-funding of projects and programmes.

Projects and programmes worth EUR 2.02 billion were under way until the end of August, which translates to 66% of all EU co-funded programmes and projects in Slovenia.

The beneficiaries of the EU funds received slightly over EUR 851 million from the national budget, or 28% of all funds.

Until the end of August, Slovenia sent to the European Commission refunding claims worth EUR 779 million, or 25% of all funds available.

The figure rose to EUR 812 million, or 26.4%, by the end of September, explained Ribič.

"We assess the situation in stage one and stage two to be satisfactory, but we also have to focus on the gap between stage two and stage three.

"Implementation of projects on the ground should also be encouraged, and so should the approval of requests by ministries," said Ribič.

She also noted the Office was intensively involved in preparing paperwork for the next, 2021-2027 programming period.

MP Andrej Rajh of the coalition Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB) welcomed the fact that the gap between payments from the state and EU budgets narrowed to some 1% from over 10%.

Jožef Horvat of the opposition New Slovenia (NSi), on the other hand, regretted that Slovenia was not using funds from the Juncker Plan.

While the office's IT system was flawed and seriously jeopardised EU funds drawing earlier this year, Ribič said things were largely running smoothly after the system had been upgraded.


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