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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(1999) 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 - 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 Slovenia should be in a position to comply with most of the EU energy legislation in the next few years. However, matters such as the adjustment of monopolies (including import and export issues), access to networks, energy pricing, State intervention in the solid fuels sector, establishment of mandatory oil stocks, improvement of energy efficiency and fuel quality standards needed to be closely monitored. No major difficulties were foreseen with regard to compliance with Euratom provisions. However, Slovenia was urged to adhere to, or implement in full, certain international nuclear agreements, and devote the requisite attention to nuclear safety standards. Long-term solutions also had to be found to the problem of nuclear waste.

The November 1998 Report largely confirmed this initial analysis and stated that further efforts were still needed to prepare for the internal energy market, in particular in the areas where the Opinion of July 1997 required more detailed follow-up work. In the field of nuclear safety, the report stated that nuclear safety standards should continue to be handled appropriately, that solutions for nuclear waste would have to be found and that the independent status of the Safety Authority should be monitored. Finally, the report recommended that a more detailed energy section be developed in the next version of the National Programme for the Adoption of the acquis, ensuring that Slovene priorities were linked to individual EU energy acts.

In its October 1999 Report, the Commission noted that Slovenia was making progress in the energy sector, but that further efforts were nevertheless necessary in the following areas: preparation of the internal energy market, including the adjustment of monopolies, access to networks, energy pricing, establishment of a mechanism for regulation, emergency preparedness, restructuring programmes and State interventions in the solid fuels sector and improvement of energy efficiency. The Commission also pointed out that the European Union was determined to keep nuclear safety issues under close review.

The November 2000 Report by the Commission noted that Slovenia had made significant progress in this area since the last Regular Report. This progress had been achieved in the areas of security of supply, energy competitiveness and the internal energy market. However, issues of energy efficiency and nuclear waste measures still had to be carefully reviewed. The Commission considered, however, that the overall situation in the energy sector in Slovenia was good.

In its November 2001 Report, the Commission noted that Slovenia had made considerable progress in a number of areas since the 2000 report. These areas included in particular that of security of supply, energy efficiency, the setting up of the internal market and nuclear safety. Framework regulations were in place for the adoption of the Community acquis. Attention needed to be given to the liberalisation of the internal energy market, however, in particular because there were still price distortions.

The October 2002 Report emphasized that progress had been made on aligning with the acquis in the energy sector. Overall, good progress has been made, notably with regard to oil stocks, the internal energy market, particularly the electricity and gas sectors, the improvement of energy efficiency and the promotion of renewable energy.

The 2003 Report concludes that Slovenia needs to continue to progressively build up oil stocks, remove the remaining electricity price distortions and transpose the most recent acquis on energy efficiency.

COMMUNITYACQUIS

The key elements of the energy acquis consist of Treaty provisions and secondary legislation relating more specifically to competition and State aid, the internal energy market (including directives on electricity, price transparency, gas and electricity transit, hydrocarbons, licensing, emergency preparedness and, in particular, security stock obligations), nuclear energy, energy efficiency and environmental rules

The Community acquis in the field of nuclear energy currently consists of a framework of legal and political instruments including international agreements. It addresses issues of health and safety, including radiation protection, safety of nuclear installations, management of radioactive waste, investment, promotion of research, nuclear common market, supplies, safeguards and international relations.

The White Paper (preparing the associated countries of Central and Eastern Europe for their integration in the internal market of the European Union) stresses in the section on energy the need for full application of key internal market directives in combination with EU competition law. As regards the nuclear sector, the White Paper refers to supply problems, safeguards and shipments of nuclear waste.

EVALUATION

With the energy act, the mining act, the amended commodity reserves act and the adoption of the pertinent enactment provisions, approximation to the acquis in the energy sector has made great strides and Slovenia has laid down the legislative framework needed to implement the EU's energy policy and to create the necessary institutions.

Satisfactory progress has been made in the area of security of supply. Constituting oil stocks to cover 90 days' consumption has been pursued according to the government plan which aims to reach the equivalent of 47 days by the end of 2001. Slovenia currently has a third of the required reserves. Slovenia is not equipped with sufficient infrastructure to store these reserves. Consequently, an agreement was concluded with Germany in May 2001, enabling Slovenia to store part of its oil reserves there.

Slovenia has maintained steady progress as regards energy competitiveness and the internal energy market. A number of decrees have been adopted preparatory to the opening of the energy market and concerning, inter alia, the setting-up of an independent regulatory authority. The internal electricity market was opened in April 2001 thus authorising major consumers of electricity to choose their supplier.

In 2003, 65% of the electricity market and 50% of the gas market were open for competition. The regulatory body, the Energy Agency, whose task it is to oversee the gas and electricity markets, has been established but needs to be strengthened further. Slovenia should transpose the recently adopted electricity and gas directives in line with the timetable provided for by this acquis.

Slovenia has continued to promote a number of initiatives, such as awarding financial incentives, to improve energy efficiency. Nevertheless, further progress must be made in this area.
Since 2002, the market for electricity produced outside Slovenia has been partially opened and a Decree on the rules for setting producer prices was issued. The Decree, based on the Energy Act, sets out rules and elements for contractual relations between generators and network operators. The National Energy Efficiency Programme 2001-2005, also addressing renewable energy issues, has been updated and is being implemented.

Slovenia's mining legislation is now in line with the acquis. Slovenia ought to complete the restructuring process.

Where administrative capacity is concerned, Slovenia has set up the necessary institutions, namely an Energy Agency, an agency for rational energy use, an agency responsible for oil product stocks and a nuclear safety administration. These bodies must be reinforced.

Nuclear safety is particularly important in the context of the enlargement of the Union. In finalising the programme to modernise the Krsko facility between 1998 and 2000, Slovenia has continued to make progress in this area. In addition, the Slovenian and Croatian Governments have signed an agreement concerning their joint ownership of this facility. Its level of nuclear safety is comparable to that of western European nuclear plants. However, additional measures must still be introduced. The Council adopted a report on nuclear safety in the context of enlargement in June 2001. This report identifies five specific measures to guarantee the safe operation of the Krsko facility and other nuclear sites, which include, inter alia, seismic qualification of the facility and the adoption of a national emergency plan. Slovenia will also have to ensure that it complies fully with Euratom requirements and procedures.

Slovenia has ratified the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management, and in March 1999 acceded to the Paris Convention on Third Party Liability in the field of nuclear energy. Slovenia has also concluded a Full Scope Safeguards Agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
In 2002, the Slovene Parliament adopted the Act on protection from ionised radiation and nuclear safety. The Act regulates the field of nuclear and radiation safety and defines security procedures for the workers and individuals exposed to ionised radiation.

In 2003, Slovenia provided information on progress regarding the independence of its nuclear safety regulatory authority from the promotion of nuclear energy. Slovenia should continue to pay attention to further strengthening the capacity of its radioactive waste management agency, ARAO.

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

 
Last updated: 09.03.2004
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