The Slovenia Times

Minority in Italy Facing New Funding Cuts


According to the Slovenian Cultural and Economic Association (SKGZ), the proposal for the 2013 budget allocates EUR 2.396m for Slovenian organisations and institutions, EUR 2.639m is earmarked for the purpose in 2014 and EUR 2.344m for 2015. The figures are down from the initial sum of EUR 2.8m last year.

The latest budget figures are a repeat of the scenario seen in the past years when the Italian government more than halved funding prescribed by the minority protection act. Prompted by interventions from Slovenia, the Italian parliament each year subsequently corrected the figure to EUR 5.3m.

However, this year the minority's cultural organisations are set to get EUR 4.4m instead of the EUR 5.3m planned as a result of government austerity measures.

"It is outrageous and unacceptable to set 2.8 million euros as the basic sum of state funding for the Slovenian minority and to cut it even further," the SKGZ said in a press release, noting that the basic figure had always been set at around EUR 5m.

The SKGZ warned that considering that Slovenian organisations and institutions were being forced into cutting back on its programmes and staff even now, the implementation of the latest stability bill would jeopardise the very existence of the minority's biggest and most important professional cultural institutions.

Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi, visiting Slovenia for the inter-governmental ministerial on Friday, said that the Slovenian community might not be able to get the full funding this year, but that the shortfall would be taken into consideration in the next year's budget.


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