News roundup - Monday, 6 May

Ljubljana, 6 May - Below is a roundup of major events on Monday, 6 May:

SocDems file list of candidates for EU elections

LJUBLJANA - The coalition Social Democrats (SD) filed their list of candidates for the EU election. The list is topped by MEP Matjaž Nemec, while the party's other MEP, Milan Brglez, was placed at the bottom. SD leader Matjaž Han said he hoped the party wins one of the nine seats Slovenia is entitled to in the European Parliament, and believes it has a credible team than can bring change for the better in Europe by means of a strong social democracy at the EU level.

MEP Grošelj to stand in EU election after all

LJUBLJANA - MEP Klemen Grošelj (Renew/Freedom Movement) will stand in the EU election as the top candidate of the non-parliamentary Greens of Slovenia party after his Freedom Movement placed him practically at the bottom of the list of candidates and he withdrew his consent to run. Grošelj said that after deciding not on stand for the Freedom Movement slate, he has received many phone calls of support. This led to an idea of forming an alternative list of candidates that would bring together centrist, liberal and green parties.

Parliament launches inquiry into PM's firm, party

LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly ordered the launch of a parliamentary inquiry targeting Star Solar, a company owned by PM Robert Golob, Gen-I, a company he used to be the CEO of, and the financing of the ruling Freedom Movement. The inquiry, launched at the request of the upper chamber of parliament, is to ascertain Golob's responsibility and role for alleged wrongdoings. While the opposition alleges that funds were siphoned off for illegal financing of the Freedom Movement, the coalition said that the instrument of parliamentary inquiry was being abused to score political points.

Slovenia aims to step up thermal treatment capacity

LJUBLJANA/MARIBOR - When it comes to thermal waste treatment, Slovenia mostly depends on foreign incinerators, but the authorities are planning to build at least two such facilities to increase capacity. The planned additions to an incinerator in Celje, the new facilities are likely to be located in Ljubljana and Maribor, as these are the only municipalities to express interest in the project. The draft regulation will enter public consultation in mid-May.

Slovenia critical as Italy fails to notify border checks extension

ROME, Italy/LJUBLJANA - The Interior Ministry said that Italy had not sent a formal notice informing Slovenia of its border check extension. The largest opposition party, the Democrats (SDS), has requested an emergency session of the parliamentary Home Affairs Committee to discuss the matter. MEP Matjaž Nemec (S&D/SD) also responded critically, saying that Italy's Schengen-related decisions were politically motivated as they come ahead of EU election.

Slovenia and UK mark Friendship Day

VINICA - Stressing the importance of alliance, Defence Minister Marjan Šarec and outgoing UK Ambassador Tiffany Sadler addressed a ceremony marking the British-Slovenian Friendship Day at the spot in southern Slovenia where a British bomber was shot down just before the end of the Second World War. Šarec expressed joy that Slovenia and the UK were celebrating their friendship today, saying the UK had played a key role in defending Europe and defeating the Third Reich.

Banking system remains stable, cyber risk increased

LJUBLJANA - Bank of Slovenia said in its latest financial stability report that the banking and the entire financial system in Slovenia remains stable. Currently estimated as low or moderate, the general level of systemic risks keeps declining. However, the central bank warned that cyber security risks are increased amid escalated geopolitical tensions.

Minister travels to Brussels by train

LJUBLJANA - Minister of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities Luka Mesec is travelling to Brussels by train instead of plane to attend the meeting of EU ministers for equality on Tuesday. While the journey will produce less CO2 emissions than a flight, it will cost the same and take ten times longer. Mesec believes that train travel can become more affordable and faster. "If more officials had to travel to Brussels on rails instead of in the air, we would have had fast trains long time ago," the minister said.

Fuel prices going down on Tuesday

LJUBLJANA - The price of regular petrol sold outside the Slovenian motorway network will drop by 1.9 cents to EUR 1.541 a litre on Tuesday, while diesel and heating oil will each be 4.3 cents cheaper at EUR 1.484 and EUR 1.127, respectively. The new prices, which come as a result of the falling fuel prices on global markets, will be in force until 20 May, the Environment, Climate and Energy Ministry announced. Retail margins remain limited to 7.83 cents per litre for diesel, 7.94 cents for regular petrol and 8 cents for heating oil.

Campaign launched to ban cages for hens and sows in Slovenia

LJUBLJANA - The Animal Enterprise Transparency Project, a Slovenian animal welfare NGO, launched a campaign which urges legislation to abolish the use of cages in animal husbandry, foremost for laying hens and sows. The NGO said that the majority of people are not aware how wide-spread such methods of farming are in Slovenia, so the campaign is designed to pressure the government into banning the use of cages based on a scientific consensus on their impact on the welfare of sows and hens.

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