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Prime Minister Participates in the 18th Crafts and Entrepreneurship Forum

At today’s forum, where 125 demands were presented by representatives of crafts and entrepreneurship, the Prime Minister gave assurances that the Government will take all measures on the basis of an ongoing dialogue. “This dialogue must be continuous, because only through dialogue can we arrive at better solutions,” stressed dr. Golob.

Prime Minister Participates in the 18th Crafts and Entrepreneurship Forum

Prime Minister Participates in the 18th Crafts and Entrepreneurship Forum | Author Nebojša Tejić/STA

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“If there was ever a time for development restructuring of the economy, it is now,” said the Prime Minister, underlining that billions of funds are available to restructure the economy for development into a green breakthrough and a digital transition. As there has never been more funding available for this purpose, he called on entrepreneurs to undertake this kind of restructuring, which will also determine how we, as Slovenia, navigate the future.

A large part of the debate focused on the labour shortages affecting virtually all European countries. As the Prime Minister pointed out, without labour imports, it will be difficult for Europe to maintain its current level of prosperity. With the Foreigners Act, the government has introduced a system to speed up the employment of foreigners, starting with the public sector. “We want to create a functioning system, which has not existed so far,” said dr. Golob, who called on entrepreneurship representatives to jointly define priority areas for the employment of foreign labour in the economy.

Concerning the problem of attracting young people to vocational education, the participants agreed on the need to strengthen the dialogue with the ministry for education. Young people who choose to go to vocational school should see vocational education as the start of an entrepreneurial career.

Small business representatives also raised dilemmas regarding the planned tax changes. The Prime Minister stressed that experts from different fields would first be consulted. “It is an indisputable fact that Slovenia has a very high labour burden and, on the other hand, a very low taxation of wealth,” the Prime Minister pointed out, stressing the need to find solutions in the social dialogue, and to find a better balance between the burden of labour and social contributions on the one hand, and the burden of wealth on the other.

Representatives of crafts and entrepreneurship thanked the Government for, among other things, the measures taken in the area of energy price increases, which have affected most small business consumers over the past year. The government has extended the regulation of electricity prices for small business customers until the end of the year, as well as the validity of the regulation setting the maximum allowable electricity price for micro, small, and medium-sized companies.

In line with the Forum’s motto “United we are stronger”, the Prime Minister called on participants to work together as representatives of craft and entrepreneurship in identifying programmes and proposals for solutions that could then be implemented and resourced through dialogue.