Businesses see significant potential in Slovenia despite downsides

Ljubljana – Slovenia has enormous business potential, said participants of a panel held as part of the investment and development conference Slovenia Business Bridge on Thursday, who also called for a leaner state and lower taxes. Minister for Digital Transformation Mark Boris Andrijanič said that the digital transformation would be accelerated.

Slovenia would like to be one of the top five digitally most advanced countries in Europe in less then a decade, which is why it has been implementing an action plan for digital transformation conceived by the strategic council for digitalisation, Andrijanič said.

“In the next couple of years, we will present cutting-edge digital services in healthcare, education and public administration. We will work to improve the business environment for technological and other companies, and invest more in technological research and development,” he said.

Among new solutions he listed an e-ID card for citizens, a mobile app for key government services, telemedicine, e-construction permits and e-notary services.

Turning to taxes, he said the council proposed simpler taxation of cryptocurrencies and tax incentives for IT experts.

Slovenia plans to open a representation office in Silicon Valley and a centre for Slovenian experts who want to return home from abroad. An international research centre for artificial intelligence is located in Ljubljana.

“And we will also do everything we can to attract as many investments as possible to Slovenia,” the minister added.

Business executives, including Atlantic Grupa director general Emil Tedeschi, Outfit 7 co-founder Iza Login and United Group founder Dragan Šolak, agreed that Slovenia was an excellent country to live in and to do business in, praising efforts for sustainability.

However, Šolak was critical of the political intervening in business such was the decision to stop the sale of the company TS Media to United Group as the highest bidder.

He said state services should be cheaper and more effective, and wages less burdened by taxes, which was echoed by Tedeschi.

Tedeshi also highlighted that Slovenia boasted a good location and had virtually no borders with Italy, Austria and Hungary, and that soon it would have no borders with Croatia, when it joins the Schangen zone. He also pointed to the quality of air, food, water, infrastructure and to security.