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27th regular session of the Government of the Republic of Slovenia

In today’s session, the Government was briefed on Slovenia’s successful participation in the cross-border, transnational and inter-regional Interreg programmes. The European Commission is presenting Slovenia as a success story.

Interreg programmes are the framework for implementing joint measures and policies, for exchanging experience and knowledge between national, regional and local players from different countries. The challenges countries face nowadays often go beyond national borders. Interreg programmes are the framework for implementing joint measures and policies, for exchanging experience and knowledge between national, regional and local players from different countries. The challenges countries face nowadays often go beyond national borders. For the 2021-2027 Programming Period, the European Commission has already approved 11 out of 13 Interreg programmes. The Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy (SVRK) has received its third mandate for managing three cross-border programmes with Austria, Hungary and Croatia. The total amount of money available for these three cross-border programmes, as contributed by the European Regional Development Fund, amounts to EUR 99.2 million. The first tender – for the Slovenia-Austria cross-border programme – will be published by the SVRK on 16 December this year. The first tenders for the Slovenia-Hungary and Slovenia-Croatia programmes are expected in February or March 2023. Slovenia is participating in 13 Interreg programmes: four cross-border programmes with regions in neighbouring countries, five transnational programmes (the Alps, Central Europe, the Danube Basin, the IPA Adriatic-Ionian programme, and the Euro-Mediterranean region), and four inter-regional programmes that include all Members States, as well as some other countries (Interreg Europe, Interact, ESPON and URBACT). And Slovenia is successful in all these programmes, as the European Commission is presenting the country as a success story. The statistics also prove this: in the period 2014-2020 our project partners concluded almost 1,200 contracts (1,179 contracts, to be precise), worth EUR 230 million in total. Eighty-five percent of this amount came from EU funds.

The Government appointed Peter Grum, Director General of the Financial Administration of the Republic of Slovenia, for a period of five years, from 10 December 2022 until 9 December 2027, with the possibility of reappointment.

Report on the intervention and cost of firefighting in the area of Socerb

The Government today adopted a Report on the intervention and cost of fighting the fire in the natural environment around Socerb, from 9 to 11 August this year, and has made a decision concerning the reimbursement of expenses.

The Government has decided to pay the Administration for Civic Protection and Disaster Relief EUR 112,433 to cover its expenses. The money will come from the budget reserve. Out of the above sum, up to EUR 103,550 will be earmarked for volunteer fire brigades, and up to EUR 8,882 will go to the Koper Fire Brigade. The Government has also made the decision not to reimburse the City of Koper, the Police and the Slovenian Armed Forces for their expenses connected with the intervention.

The forest fire in the area of Socerb, which lasted from 9 to 11 August this year, covered approximately 100 hectares of land belonging to the City of Koper. The total intervention costs that have been paid amount to EUR 209,268.

The Government also authorised the purchase of aircraft for aerial firefighting in today’s session.

Source: Ministry of Defence

Comirnaty and Spikevax vaccines against COVID-19 donated to Bosnia & Herzegovina

The Slovenian Government decided in today’s session to donate COVID-19 vaccines to Bosnia & Herzegovina (BIH). One has the proprietary name COMIRNATY BA.4/5 and is produced by BioNTech/Pfizer, and the other is SPIKEVAX BA.1, produced by Moderna.

In addition to basic hygiene and protective measures, an effective countermeasure against the COVID-19 pandemic is vaccination of the world’s population. Access to effective, high quality, and safe COVID-19 vaccines on a global level is the only realistic possibility for slowing down and stopping the spread of infections, reducing mortality and easing the burden on healthcare systems. As there has been little interest in vaccination against COVID-19 in Slovenia for some time, leaving large quantities of vaccines unused, Slovenia will donate 31,680 doses of the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine, and 20,400 doses of the Moderna vaccine, to BIH, via the EU mechanism in the field of civil protection. This is in response to a request from the competent authorities in BIH.

The Slovenian Government has tasked the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Defence, the Administration for Civil Protection and Disaster Relief, and the National Institute of Public Health, to do all that is necessary to carry out the donation. The Slovenian Government has also authorised the Minister of Health to sign the contractual documentation between Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and BioNTech/Pfizer, and that between Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Moderna, to carry out the donation.

It is estimated that the cost of transporting the vaccines from Slovenia to BIH will amount to approximately EUR 120,000, and Slovenia, i.e. its Ministry of Health, has promised to cover around EUR 30,000 of this expense. The remainder will be provided by the European Commission.

Source: Ministry of Health

Slovenia accepts donation of Jynneos vaccines by Bavarian Nordic

At today’s regular session, the Slovenian Government decided to accept a donation of 1,400 doses of vaccine with the proprietary name Jynneos, for the purpose of implementing measures to counter threats to health connected with monkeypox infections. The donation was offered by the European Commission as part of preparedness and response to the health crisis.

Through its Health Emergency preparedness and Response Authority – HERA, the European Commission is implementing joint measures to mitigate the consequences of infection with the monkeypox virus, which include ordering the Jynneos (Imvanex) vaccine. The European Commission has bought the vaccine and will be donating it to interested Member States in the next phase of the project. Based on a Government decision from 2 August 2022, Slovenia has already received its first donation of monkeypox vaccine, but following a proposal by the Vaccinations Advisory Group which changed the vaccination strategy, it has requested a further donation of the smallest possible quantity of vaccine doses. The European Commission confirmed the request for a second donation on 26 October 2022.

Receipt of the vaccine will be possible upon prior written approval from the Member State. The written approval will include the authorisation of national exceptions (a regulatory exception) for the import of the medicine and its use, the technical preparedness to receive and store the vaccine, agreement with the offered amount of vaccine, and agreement with the conditions of the donation, including the assumption of responsibility for the use of this vaccine.

The Slovenian Government authorises the Minister of Health to sign the annex to the contract between the Republic of Slovenia and the European Commission for the donation of 1,400 vaccine doses. The Government also authorises the National Institute of Public Health to carry out in its name activities connected with the receipt of the vaccines, in line with the donation contract.

As a result of the receipt of the donation there will be no financial impact on the state budget, as the cost of the import is covered by the European Commission. With regard to storage and distribution, the National Institute of Public Health will use the premises and equipment it is already using for the COVID-19 vaccine.

Source: Ministry of Health