Prime Minister Janez Janša: We are leaving the EU summit satisfied, we have reached an ambitious agreement
Today, after several days of negotiations, the European Council reached an agreement on a multiannual financial framework and a recovery instrument totalling EUR 1,824 billion. The agreement brings extensive additional funds for Slovenia, which will facilitate the recovery after the COVID-19 crisis and encourage investments in the green transition and digital transformation.
"After Brexit, the European Union is different, the balance of power is different, new balances are being struck, and perhaps this has further contributed to the fact that it took practically four days to reach an agreement," Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša said in a statement to the media.
He went on to say that Slovenia welcomed the agreement reached on both the multiannual financial framework and the recovery instrument. "It is a great achievement," said the Prime Minister, adding that it is also a positive moment. "Firstly, because the total amount of funds for recovery and development in the next years, especially in the first three years, is now in fact sufficient. It is a robust response to the corona crisis, and this overall amount also provides some greater optimism before the autumn, when we are all still a little afraid of the continuation of this epidemiological wave," said the Prime Minister, adding: "On the other hand, both instruments are good also because we have achieved a fair distribution."
"Particularly in this last part, our proposals were taken into account, and the proposals of others, which we addressed to the European Council, the leadership and the Commission in the sense that the specific features of individual countries were considered. In the case of Slovenia, especially the problem of our western region, which was threatened by a drastic drop in funding compared to the previous financial perspective," stressed the Prime Minister and further pointed out, We have succeeded with our maximum proposal to provide additional transition funds, so that this envelope is large enough to make this transition smooth."
"According to the starting points we had, Slovenia has attained a key strategic goal, we have reached an ambitious agreement, which is important not only from a financial but also from a psychological point of view. Slovenia has achieved all its main negotiating goals, and we have secured a very favourable share of funds under both instruments," emphasised the Prime Minister.
He then pointed out what this specifically means in numbers: "If we talk about the general global financial position of Slovenia, for the whole period of seven years, there are 10.5 billion euros in funds, of which 6 billion and 600 million are grants, within which our national envelope totals nearly 3 billion euros for its cohesion policy and one billion and 600 million for the common agricultural policy. Under the recovery instrument, we have 2 billion and 100 million in grants and 3 billion and 600 million in loans," said the Slovenian Prime Minister. The amount of the envelope for the Western Cohesion Region, according to the Prime Minister, is 350 million euros, which was the most we expected to obtain. "In addition, we have managed to improve the Commission's proposal when it comes to rural development, and we have received an additional EUR 50 million on this item, so that despite the fact that this meeting of the European Council was long and arduous, we are leaving it satisfied," added Prime Minister Janez Janša.
The Prime Minister also assessed that in terms of the situation, in terms of Slovenian statistics, and in terms of relative development, the outcome of the current negotiations, compared to all three negotiations so far, is the best with regard to the multiannual financial perspective.
"Slovenia remains a net recipient country of the European budget, and looking back we regret why we did not fare better in these seven years since the last negotiations, but the view from the current situation we are in is positive, and it is a success which enables us to achieve the goal of greater development and faster development in the next seven-year perspective, to a great extent also through financial resources from both instruments," said the Prime Minister.
He further said that so far, after we successfully negotiated the funds, both for the 2007–2013 period and for the 2013–2020 period, the state had a problem with their investment and it was sometimes agonising to think back to the difficult negotiations and seeing the graphs that showed that we were not very successful in the absorption of funds. "From this point of view, we are now trying to prepare ourselves better," said the Prime Minister, adding that the government will hold a working session in Brdo on Wednesday. "There we will agree on how to provide additional capacities to use these funds as productively and as quickly as possible and to prepare a programme, which is also envisaged in the document adopted today," added the Slovenian Prime Minister.