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Slovenia

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1) REFERENCES

Commission Opinion [COM(97) 2010 final - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(98) 709 final - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(99) 512 final - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2000)712 final - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2001) 700 final - SEC(2001) 1755 final - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2002) 700 final - SEC(2002) 1411 - Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2003) 675 final - SEC(2003) 1208 - Not published in the Official Journal]
Treaty of Accession to the European Union [Official Journal L 236 of 23.09.2003]

2) SUMMARY

In its Opinion of July 1997, the European Commission expressed the view that the current level of competitiveness of most of Slovene industry was such that it would probably be able to cope with the competitive pressure and market forces within the Union in the medium term. The Commission nevertheless drew attention to some problems in connection with certain inflexibilities in the labour market, and sectors and companies which had not yet undergone restructuring.

The November 1998 Report confirmed that some progress had been made, notably with regard to the definition of industrial policy strategy, but that efforts would be required to ensure proper implementation in practice.

The October 1999 Report found that some progress had been made, despite the persistence of structural problems.

The November 2000 Report noted that Slovenia had made progress in promoting competitiveness through enterprise restructuring. With regard to SME policy, Slovenia had made progress since the last Regular Report, particularly in its improvement of the business environment.

The November 2001 Report gave details on the efforts made by Slovenia in the field of industrial policy and a policy in favour of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

The October 2002 Report gave an update on the progress made by Slovenia in the field of industrial policy and a policy in favour of SMEs.

The November 2003 Report considers that Slovenia is essentially meeting the commitments arising from the accession negotiations as regards its industrial strategy and the principles of the common policy on SMEs.
The Treaty of Accession was signed on 16 April 2003 and accession took place on 1 May 2004.

COMMUNITY ACQUIS

EC industrial policy seeks to enhance competitiveness, thus achieving rising living standards and high rates of employment. Its aim is to encourage an environment favourable to initiative, to the development of undertakings throughout the Community and to industrial cooperation, and to foster better exploitation of the industrial potential of innovation, research and technological development policies. EU industrial policy combines instruments from a number of Community policies, and includes both instruments related to the operation of markets (product specification and market access, trade policy, State aid and competition policy) and measures related to industry's capacity to adapt to change (stable macro-economic environment, technology, training etc.).

In order to cope with competitive pressure and market forces within the Union, the industry of applicant countries needs to have achieved a certain level of competitiveness by the time of accession. The applicant countries need to be seen as pursuing policies aimed at open and competitive markets along the lines set out in Article 157 (ex Article 130) of the EC Treaty. Cooperation between the EU and the candidate countries in the fields of industrial cooperation, investment, industrial standardisation and conformity assessment as provided for in the Europe Agreement is an important indicator of development in the right direction.

EVALUATION

Slovenia's industrial strategy essentially complies with the concepts and principles of EC industrial policy, i.e. it is market-based, stable and predictable. The necessary administrative structures in this area are in place.

With regard to privatisation and restructuring, foreign direct investment rose, whilst restructuring and privatisation continued. In the field of restructuring, the implementation of the necessary financial means will need to be ensured.

Slovenia has made progress in adapting its industrial policy since the 1997 opinion. This chapter has been provisionally closed, no transitional arrangements have been requested and Slovenia has met its commitments (see the 2002 Report). Slovenia will have to strengthen the competitiveness of its industry to integrate it into the single market.

On SME policy, a programme for the period 2002-2006 to promote entrepreneurship and competitiveness was adopted in March 2002. The European Charter for Small Enterprises was adopted in April 2002 and should be implemented.

With regard to improving the business environment, an action programme has been implemented for the elimination of administrative barriers. Access to finance has been improved by setting up ten regional guarantee funds. Slovenia should continue to improve these aspects. There is still a need for further alignment with the Community definition of SMEs

Slovenia has introduced an SME policy since the 1997 opinion. This chapter has been provisionally closed, no transitional arrangements have been requested and Slovenia has met its commitments (see the 2002 Report). Slovenia will need to focus on facilitating the access of SMEs to finance and innovation, on improving the skills of its entrepreneurs, and on continuing to fight bureaucracy.

This summary is for information only and is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document.

 
Last updated: 03.03.2004
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