The Slovenia Times

GZS Hands Out Annual Innovation Awards


"If we continue to be innovative, we don't need to be afraid of the future," GZS director general Samo Hribar Milič said on the occasion.

The annual awards went to steel maker Acroni, household appliance makers BSH Hišni aparati and Gorenje, electrical motors manufacturer Domel, pharmaceutical companies Farma GRS, Krka and Lek, vessel maker Quadrofoil, the SiEVA development centre, car parts maker TPV, glassworks Steklarna Hrastnik and industrial conglomerate Hidria.

The ceremony was also attended and addressed by Prime Minister Miro Cerar, who said that "we have to encourage each other to be open and bold, to look for new paths and solutions in the economy, science and other areas."

Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek said that while Slovenia is above average in terms of scientific articles and citations and is improving the protection of intellectual property, "we are unfortunately still below average in non-technological innovation and economic effects of innovation."

Hribar Milič meanwhile labelled innovation a must for any company and employees, as it is a condition for survival on the market and at least maintaining, if not boosting of the competitive position.

According to the GZS, Slovenia takes 42nd place on the innovation list of the World Economic Forum (WEF) among 144 countries, and 10th place in terms of the share of GDP earmarked for R&D on a list of 61 compiled by the International Institute for Management Development (IMD).

Slovenia is recording a 2.6% or fourth fastest growth of the innovation index in the EU in the last eight years, and the country is also in the upper third of EU countries in terms of the value of intellectual capital.

While the latest surveys still put Slovenia among innovation followers, GZS president Marjan Mačkošek believes that the trend is being reversed and that Slovenia is making its way among the leaders in this field.

"According to all published data in the field of innovation, we are moving from followers to leaders and today's award winners confirm this," Mačkošek told the STA, adding that the rewarded innovations had strong market potential.


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