Mladina sees Golob’s cabinet picks as risky

Ljubljana – The weekly Mladina says the presumptive new PM Robert Golob has missed the opportunity to form a really good cabinet team combining experience and knowledge about key contemporary challenges. The team presented is unusual, but there is some logic to it, comments editor-in-chief Grega Repovž.

The editorial describes the upcoming finance minister Klemen Boštjančič, the head of the Sava tourism company, as a typical new-era economist without experience in public finance and politics.

“Experienced entrepreneurs describe him as strong, somebody even labelled him a bulldozer,” Repovž says, arguing that such a persona may actually be what is needed to dismantle the network that the government of outgoing PM Janez Janša has woven around state-owned companies.

Moreover, although Slovenia is used to having “professors, conservative keepers of public money” as finance ministers it was the ministers who came from business who typically did a good job.

Adding it is good Boštjančič “is familiar with all the players in the grey zones of Slovenia’s economy”, Repovž argues that the key indicator will be “the people he surrounds himself with”. “The names that are circulating raise doubt,” he says in Risky Game.

The editorial also takes a closer look at health ministry pick Danijel Bešič Loredan, suggesting that concerns he could be a covert privatiser of the healthcare system may be an unjustified product of the surgeon’s past battles within the system.

“The Slovenian healthcare system can only be saved by giving actual powers to the public health insurer – which is something politics is afraid of – and by reaching a social agreement between all sides.”

“Is Bešič Loredan, somewhat bitter after his battles, really the right solution,” Repovž wonders, while agreeing the time may be ripe to give one of the pioneer fighters in the healthcare system a chance again to change things.

The commentary moreover wonders whether it was prudent to invite the leaders of two parties that lost their parliamentary status, ex PMs Marjan Šarec and Alenka Bratušek, into the cabinet.

While the move is a testimony to the sincerity of Golob’s cooperation calls, the pair’s “quite heavy personalities” and ties to “strange figures”, make this another risky decision.