The Slovenia Times

Parliament to Launch Inquiry into TEŠ6 Thermo Plant


The parliamentary inquiry commission will be looking into the responsibility of politicians for the costly investment in the Šoštanj power station at the initiative of the opposition United Left (ZL).

The ZL secured cross-partisan support for its motion at the beginning of the month, getting the coalition Party of Miro Cerar (SMC), Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) and Social Democrats (SD) as well as the opposition New Slovenia (NSi) and Alliance of Alenka Bratušek (ZaAB) on board.

The investigation should go as far back as 2003 when talks on the construction of TEŠ6 first started.

The building of the new generator at the Termoelektrarna Šoštanj (TEŠ) coal-fired power station is blamed for severely draining the finances of the state-owned HSE energy holding due to mounting costs.

The costs of the project, which is already the subject of several criminal investigations, were initially estimated at EUR 600m, but they later ballooned to EUR 1.428bn.

MPs are also expected to pass the fiscal rule implementation bill at first reading, which according to PM Miro Cerar sets a very rigorous framework for the country's public financial policy.

The only party to openly oppose the motion during the debate on Wednesday was the ZL, while the ZSSS and KSJS trade unions warned against it on Thursday. They fear it would give the government the power to unilaterally cut wages, pensions and social transfers.

The MPs are also expected to endorse a set of opposition-sponsored recommendations that call the central bank to account for its bank resolution measures and urge the government to disclose the methodology for the transfer of toxic assets to the bad bank.

Also on the agenda is the opposition Democrats (SDS)-sponsored bill on internships, banning unpaid internships in the public sector and envisaging incentives for employment of interns.

The government said after its session on Thursday it did not oppose the bill but would put forward some amendments.


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