News roundup - Thursday, 13 July, until 3pm

Ljubljana, 13 July - Below is a roundup of major events on Thursday, 13 July, until 3pm local time:

Place of W Balkan countries in EU, but more will needed, Pirc Musar says

BRDO PRI KRANJU - The place of all Western Balkan countries is in the EU, President Nataša Pirc Musar said as she hosted her Albanian counterpart Bajram Begaj. She praised Albania's progress in its efforts to join the EU and repeated her position that the EU enlargement process should be sped up. However, the countries will have to show stronger political will to follow through. The presidents also touched on the Brdo-Brijuni process. They share the view that countries should focus on what unites them instead of their divisions.

Slovenia appoints new ambassadors to the US, Vatican and Ukraine

LJUBLJANA - President Nataša Pirc Musar appointed several new ambassadors. Iztok Mirošič, former ambassador to the UK and Italy, will replace Tone Kajzer as the ambassador to the US, and Franci But, former ambassador to Czechia, Serbia and Germany, will become the new ambassador to the Vatican. In Ukraine, Tomaž Mencin, will be succeeded by Mateja Prevolšek, a former ambassador to Egypt and an employee of the Slovenian Permanent Representation to the EU in Brussels.

Slovenia and Croatia to formalise emergency health service cooperation

IZOLA - Slovenia and Croatia will sign an agreement on Friday formalising an existing protocol under which people living just across the border in the Croatian region of Istria have access to emergency medical services of the Izola general hospital. The expenses will be covered by the Croatian public health insurance fund. The agreement will be signed by prime minister Andrej Plenoković and Robert Golob during Golob's first official visit to Zagreb.

Storms caused significant damage in N Slovenia during the night

BOHINJ/SLOVENJ GRADEC/MARIBOR/MURSKA SOBOTA - Fierce storms moved across northern Slovenia during the night, with strong rain, hail, and wind gusts exceeding 100 km/h. Moving from the west to the east at high speed, the storm system left in its wake damaged buildings and electrical infrastructure, flooded basements and roads, and fallen trees. Two French citizens were injured in Bohinj, camping in a forest outside a campsite. An orange alert remains in place for today.

Geneplanet gets EUR 20m financial injection

LJUBLJANA - The Ljubljana-based biotech company Geneplanet has secured a financial injection worth EUR 20 million, provided by a group of international investors led by the Bulgarian private equity fund Black Peak Capital. The investors' list includes the Slovenian construction group Kolektor and one of its shareholders, FMR Holding. Other investors chipping in were the German biotech company Darwin and Designed Impact Ventures, an Austrian business services provider, Geneplanet said.

Ministry to purchase 5,200 military helmets

LJUBLJANA - The Defence Ministry has ordered 5,200 mid-cut military helmets from Croatian manufacturer Šestan-Busch in a deal worth some EUR 2 million. The ministry decided for the move because the lifespan of the current helmets, which have been in use since 2012, has expired. The new BK-ACH-MC helmets are expected to be fully delivered by the end of 2025, the ministry told the STA.

© STA, 2023