Changes Needed to Resume Success

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Mramor believes that Slovenia has lost its reputation of being an example to others and the leading country in central and eastern Europe in terms of fiscal and economic policies due to a combination of political polarisation and striving for power at any cost without regard to what is good for the country.

Peter Kraljič, director emeritus of McKinsey & Company global management consulting firm, was also critical, saying that the country should have introduced austerity measures and reforms a long time ago.

However, he too believes that Slovenia can regain its reputation if only it manages to change its mentality and values.

Listing a set of necessary measures, Mramor said that financial markets needed to be calmed first, as Slovenia is considered a risk because its public finances are unsustainable due to the ageing population. Pension and health reforms are urgent, he said.

The second task on the to-do list is to consolidate banks in order to ease the credit crunch, and the third task is to introduce measures to boost competition.

Competition-boosting measures should include a comprehensive labour market reform, the speeding up of administrative procedures, simplification of state operations and shorter court procedures, said the dean, who believes that focusing on Slovenia's own know-how will be of key importance for the country in the long run.

Kraljič moreover said that Slovenia needed to re-establish the trust of foreign investors. He believes the loss of trust is a consequence of a poor attitude toward foreign investors and of failing to carry out structural reform.

Meanwhile, Christof Droste, the CEO of Hella Saturnus, expressed the wish for a new government to form soon. He also believes that more should be invested in knowledge and that Slovenia should reinforce its advantages and be more willing to accept foreign investments.