News roundup - Thursday, 9 May, until 3pm

Ljubljana, 9 May - Below is a roundup of major events on Thursday, 9 May, until 3pm local time:

Government launches Palestine recognition procedure

LJUBLJANA - The government launched procedures for Slovenia's recognition of Palestine. Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon said this was a first, irreversible step and announced the recognition motion would be submitted to the National Assembly within a month or by 13 June. Prime Minister Robert Golob described the recognition as leverage for pressure to end the fighting in Gaza, adding that the coalition was united in this.

Lenarčič says Palestine recognition at Slovenia's discretion

LJUBLJANA - European Crisis Management Commissioner Janez Lenarčič said that recognition of Palestine was an independent decision by the Slovenian government and parliament, but noted that support for a two-state solution implied both states are recognised. He added that the act of recognition would not contribute much to delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza.

NLB bank plans to double assets, revenue and profit by the end of 2030

LJUBLJANA - NLB bank presented its group strategy until the end of 2030, aiming to double its total assets, revenue in profit. The plan is for the balance sheet total to reach some EUR 50 billion, revenue EUR 2 billion and profit EUR 1 billion. "The strategy is credible, as the region will grow faster than Western countries, CEO Blaž Brodnjak said.

Slovenian businesses record higher profit in 2023

LJUBLJANA - Slovenian companies created EUR 6.7 billion in net profit in 2023, up 10% in nominal terms and 2% in real terms from 2022. Net value added per employee also grew, while revenue stayed level in nominal terms and decreased by 7% in real terms, shows data by AJPES, the agency for public legal records. The growth in net profit can be accounted to large and micro companies, while small and medium-sized enterprises recorded a lower profit, shows data by AJPES.

NSi says EU needs boost as it starts election campaign

LJUBLJANA - New Slovenia - the Christian Democrats (NSi) launched campaigning for the June EU election as the election campaign officially started. NSi head and top candidate Matej Tonin said they will work towards winning two MEP seats. Preserving the European way of life, having a reasonable green transition that does not put additional pressure on businesses, and adopting a more strict attitude to illegal migration are important goals, he added.

DeSUS and Good State strive for peace in EU elections

LJUBLJANA - The non-parliamentary Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) and Good State filed their joint list of candidates for the EU elections, with their manifesto focusing on peace, improving the EU's competitive edge, and efforts against centralisation. Top candidate on the list, retired journalist Uroš Lipušček, called on the government to diplomatically recognise Palestine at Friday's UN General Assembly session.

Law on parliamentary inquiry slated to change

LJUBLJANA - The Justice Committee amended on Wednesday legislation governing parliamentary inquiry to better protect persons that are the subject of investigation, a motion tabled by the National Assembly president that the opposition has decried as an attempt to hamstring inquiries. The key part of the proposed amendment is that the Constitutional Court may be petitioned to examine the constitutionality of the parliamentary decision initiating an inquiry.

Panvita downplays takeover fears

LJUBLJANA - Toni Balažič, the chairman of food company Panvita, dismissed concerns about the effects of the acquisition of a majority stake in the company by the Croatian firm Mplus. He told POP TV Wednesday evening all functions including development will remain in Slovenia and the company will responsibly manage the land it leases from the Farmland and Forest Fund.

Pirc Musar congratulates Macedonian president-elect

LJUBLJANA - President Nataša Pirc Musar congratulated Gordana Siljanovska-Davkova on her victory in the second round of presidential election in North Macedonia. She said she looked forward to working together to build a European future for North Macedonia, its people and the whole Western Balkan region.

Govt told to optimise apprenticeship system

LJUBLJANA - The Ministry of Education was urged to prepare a plan of measures to optimise the existing system of apprenticeship as the parliamentary Education Committee discussed how the system currently works. The session was requested by the opposition Democratic Party (SDS), which argued that countries throughout Europe are placing more and more emphasis on combining classroom instruction and work placement.

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