Fit for 55 package in focus as Slovenia’s EU presidency starts

Brussels – Slovenia presented to reporters in Brussels on Tuesday the priorities of its presidency of the Council of the EU with the Fit for 55 legislative package attracting the most interest. Slovenian representatives also said Slovenia would strive for breakthrough in terms of EU accession progress of North Macedonia and Albania.

At the event hosted by the API/IPA international press association, the priorities of the presidency in the second half of the year were presented by Slovenia’s Permanent Representative to the EU Iztok Jarc and his deputy Tamara Weingerl-Požar.

The priorities include resilience, recovery based on green and digital transition and a strategically autonomous union, the Conference on the Future of Europe, the European way of life, the rule of law and equal criteria for all, and a credible and safe union capable of providing protection and stability in its neighbourhood.

The reporters were interested the most in the demanding legislative package of measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030, popularly called Fit for 55.

According to Weingerl-Požar, the package is expected to trigger a “true legislative tsunami”, and the Slovenian EU presidency expects a proposal from the European Commission by 14 July.

Regarding the stalled appointment of European delegated prosecutors from Slovenia, Ambassador Jarc said Slovenia supported the formation of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office.

He said that another round of appointment was under way, as the first one had not been concluded, and that there was the wish and hope that the delegated prosecutors would be appointed as soon as possible.

One of the key events during the presidency will be the EU-Western Balkans summit in Slovenia on 6 October, with Jarc saying that the wish was that breakthrough was achieved by September in terms of the EU accession negotiations with Northern Macedonia and Albania.

This would provide for a better atmosphere at the summit, he said, adding that one should first wait for the results of the parliamentary election in Bulgaria.

Jarc was also asked about the expansion of the Schengen Area, with Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria waiting to enter it, but he only said there was interest for progress regarding this issue.

The Slovenian presidency will deal with around 150 dossiers and Jarc noted that the Slovenian presidency was where things would return to normal when it came to the possibility of in-person meetings.

A total of 45 meetings at the ministerial or higher level are planned, in addition to around 1,600 working meetings, mostly in Brussels. Slovenia will host around 15,000 people, including around 50 Brussels correspondents this weekend.