EU Commission comes to Slovenian mining regions’ aid


The EU Commission accepted Slovenia's proposal to assist both regions in a just transition of phasing out coal, according to the Infrastructure Ministry.

Slovenia could be entitled to obtaining EU funds from the coming Just Transition Fund as well, but it is yet unclear what the eligibility criteria will be.

The ministry pointed out that Slovenia needed to draw up a list of vulnerable regions which could benefit from the fund as well as detailed transition action plans as part of the country's national energy and climate strategy.

Slovenia has already put forward a project proposal on the mining region restructuring strategy and action plan in line with the just transition principle. The country will use this strategy to apply for the 2019 Structural Reform Support Programme open call.

The national strategy is expected to be drafted by summer, according to the ministry, followed by the action plan draft in autumn.

The final strategy is expected by the end of the year and will include potential measures. Mining regions are faced with numerous challenges in phasing out coal, including in cutting jobs and decarbonisation, said the ministry, adding that social dialogue, boosted research and renewable energy innovation would facilitate the green shift.

This week, the EU Commission presented to the member states the EUR 7.5 billion-strong Just Transition Fund and its proposal on how to slice up and allocate the sum. According to unofficial sources, Slovenia is set to get EUR 92 million from the fund.