The Slovenia Times

Slovenia aims to lead circular economy transition in region


The meeting titled Circular Economy in the Region - Integrated for Sustainability and Growth, was attended by representatives of Austria, Serbia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Croatia, Hungary and Slovakia, including experts and environment ministers or ministry officials from these countries.

The event was addressed by Environment Minister Simon Zajc, who said that economic growth, based on natural resource consumption, had resulted in a resource crisis and planet pollution and had an impact on climate change.

The minister highlighted the importance of different economic models, saying that circular economy enabled an increase in competitiveness and growth while also reducing natural resource consumption.

This model can also provide opportunities for innovations and new green jobs, said Zajc, adding that such a transition also posed a challenge for all sectors of society and was possible through cooperation.

To achieve the transition to circular economy is Slovenia's strategic target, said the minister. He told the STA that the country was one of those "who have already achieved a lot in this area and one of the few countries who possess guidelines for circular economy", listing cities and companies which have already become committed to this initiative.

The aim of the meeting was to let other countries in the region know that Slovenia is willing to become a hub enabling an easier transition and contributing its ideas and frameworks of good practices.

The conference was held as part of the 25th International Resource Panel meeting, which is co-chaired by former EU Commissioner for the Environment Janez Poto─Źnik.

According to him, Slovenia is determined to lead the transition; however, it is vital to move from guidelines to action plans which would lay down further steps for the government and businesses.

Since the implementation of such an economic model should be as swift as possible, there is not enough time to leave this to individual companies or cities, he told the STA, advocating for all the EU countries to be involved in this initiative.

The EU Commission has been taking into consideration the necessity of such a transition lately and taking a major step in this direction, said Poto─Źnik, adding that it was debatable though whether such efforts were fast or determined enough.


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