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InvestSlovenia http://dev.tend.si/investslovenia/ Bussiness news en.UTF-8 TYPO3 News Sun, 15 Sep 2019 12:42:32 +0200 Sun, 15 Sep 2019 12:42:32 +0200 TYPO3 EXT:news news-5828 Thu, 12 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia remains 67th in economic freedom rankings http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/slovenia-remains-67th-in-economic-freedom-rankings-5828/ Ljubljana, 12 September (STA) - Despite slightly improving economic freedom, Slovenia has remained 67th among 162 countries in the latest Economic Freedom of the World report, compiled by the Canadian libertarian Fraser Institute. "We have taken a few steps forward and a few steps back. The positive change relates to the shrinking of the scope of para(state) mainly through decreasing state ownership in companies," said the head of the Ljubljana-based Visio Institute, Tanja Porčnik.

A negative shift was recorded in the implementation of the rule of law, and the independence of judiciary, said Porčnik, a senior consultant at the Fraser Institute.

Slovenia scored 7.15 points out of the maximum possible 10 points to rank 67th overall.

It received 5.25 points for the scope of (para)state, to rank 138th, together with Eswatini and Rwanda.

Slovenia faired better in the legal system and ownership rights, where it scored 6.22 points, which put it in 38th place, and in international trade freedom, where it won 7.90 points and 44th place.

The country received the best score for the stability of its currency, 9.41 points, to place 24th.

Porčnik said the 2014-2018 government of Miro Cerar had not succeeded in cutting red tape. The procedure for obtaining a construction permit got even longer and the costs higher under the previous government, she noted.

The report again placed Hong Kong at the top of the ranking, at 8.91 points, followed by Singapore, New Zealand, and Switzerland as the best ranked European country. The best ranked EU country is Ireland in sixth place and 8.13 points.

Slovenia was preceded by all of its neighbouring countries; Austria ranked 26th, Italy 46th, Hungary 54th and Croatia 56th.

In the 1995-2017 period, the economic freedom improved by 0.52 points in Austria, by 0.77 points in Italy, by 1.05 points in Hungary, by 2.33 points in Croatia and by 2.05 points in Slovenia.

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news-5829 Thu, 12 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Cargo-Partner opens new logistics centre at Brnik airport http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/cargo-partner-opens-new-logistics-centre-at-brnik-airport-5829/ Brnik, 12 September (STA) - Austrian logistics company Cargo-Partner inaugurated a new, EUR 28 million logistics centre near the Jože Pučnik Airport Ljubljana on Thursday. Boasting 25,000 square metres of storage space, the facility is one of the largest logistics centres in the region. The centre will service Cargo-Partner's clients in central and south-eastern Europe, but the company believes it will have to expand the centre in a few years' time.

Cargo-Partner owner Stefan Krauter said at the opening that the company had decided to build in Slovenia due to its geostrategic position between Asia and central Europe and because of trust in the country's political and social environment.

Moreover, the Slovenian market lacks modern logistics services, he said, adding that the location itself also provided great potential for development in the region.

Krauter noted that it took a long time before the company had acquired all the necessary paperwork, while the construction itself was completed in a mere eleven months.

The final price tag of the complex was EUR 28 million, a million and a half more than initially planned. The centre was by far the biggest investment of Cargo-Partner in the past few years.

The centre was launched last month and will replace the company's three current storage facilities in Slovenia, which amount to a combined 6,000 square metres of space.

The new centre has 25,000 square metres of storage space and another 4,000 square metres of office space. "There is great interest in and demand for our services," said Cargo-Partner Slovenia boss Viktor Kastelic.

The company has already signed on new partners and the storage is filling up fast. He believes the facility will be full in about five to seven years, when the company plans to expand the centre.

He believes that Cargo-Partner will increase its market share in Slovenia, which amounts to 21% in air cargo transport and 15% in naval transport.

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news-5827 Wed, 11 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia seeks to boost trade with Montenegro http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/slovenia-seeks-to-boost-trade-with-montenegro-5827/ Ljubljana, 11 September (STA) - Slovenia and Montenegro explored ways to boost bilateral trade and investment at business forum held in Ljubljana on Wednesday as part of a visit by Montenegrin Economy Minister Dragica Sekulić. The biggest potential was identified in energy and tourism. The meeting, hosted by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GZS) in cooperation with the SPIRIT investment promotion agency and the Montenegro's Chamber of Commerce, was attended by more than 120 business officials.

The head of the Montenegrin chamber, Vlastimir Golubović, lauded Slovenia as an active advocate of EU enlargement in the Western Balkans, saying that his country could learn a lot from Slovenia.

GZS secretary-general Sonja Šmuc noted that bilateral goods trade between the two countries was quite uneven; last year it amounted to EUR 114 million, with Slovenia's exports representing EUR 100 million.

Šmuc expressed her confidence that trade could be balanced out as well as increased in the future.

Golubović noted that Slovenia ranked 11th in terms of foreign direct investment in Montenegro; there are more than 150 companies with Slovenian capital operating in Montenegro today.

He pointed to potential to boost cooperation, in particular in tourism, agriculture, IT, airport and road infrastructure, energy and services, as well as municipality waste and waste water management.

The Montenegrin business officials and Economy Minister Sekulić are visiting Slovenia while Montenegro is being featured as the partner country at this year's International Trade Fair in Celje.

The minister said that Montenegrin companies placed a high level of trust with their Slovenian partners.

She agreed with Golubović about Slovenia being an important partner whose experience and knowledge could benefit Montenegro in institutional and economic development, including in a bid to join the EU.

As strategic fields she identified tourism, energy and the food processing industry.

The vice-chairman of the Montenegrin chamber of commerce, Ivan Saveljić proposed some concrete potential investment opportunities such as the construction of an expressway along the Montenegrin coast, development of Tivat airport, wind farms and hydro power stations.

Exploitation of the potential of the Montenegro-Italy undersea power cable will also stimulate investment in production facilities, said Saveljić, who also noted potential for investment in tourism.

A business meeting held at the Celje fair yesterday heard that Montenegro's appeal for Slovenian investors was mainly that there is a level playing field for foreign and domestic investors.

Slovenia's chief exports to Montenegro are road vehicles, pharmaceutical products and electric machinery, whereas imports consist mainly of low value added products such as non-ferrous metals and metal products.

Last year, Slovenia recorded 12,000 visitors from Montenegro, who spent an average 2.5 days here.

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news-5824 Tue, 10 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia's employment prospects among strongest in the region http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/slovenias-employment-prospects-among-strongest-in-the-region-5824/ Ljubljana, 10 September (STA) - The employment prospects in Slovenia in the final quarter of the year remain favourable, according to the latest employment forecast by temping agency Manpower. Seasonally-adjusted net employment forecast stands at 17%, which is one of the most optimistic forests in the region. The employment prospect for the final quarter is two percentage points lower in quarterly comparison and remains level year-on-year.

The upbeat hiring prospects are a result of the strongest demand for labour in mining and quarrying, and the public sector and social services since the survey started nine years ago. They stand at +20% and +19%, respectively.

Among all ten industries included in the survey, the most notable hiring is expected in manufacturing (+22%) and construction (+21%).

The lowest chances of employment are expected in agriculture, forestry and fishing and the hospitality sector (at +13% each).

Geographically speaking, the strongest demand for workers is expected in the north-western region (+18%).

The hiring prospects are the strongest in middle-sized companies (+27%), while those for small companies are the highest on record (+21%).

The Manpower survey was conducted among 59,000 employers in 44 countries, 43 of whom report a positive hiring outlook for the fourth quarter.

Slovenia's employment prospects are preceded only by Greece's in this region, while globally, Japan, Taiwan, the US and India have the best net employment outlook. Spain, the Czech Republic, Argentina, Costa Rica and Switzerland are at the bottom of the list.

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news-5825 Tue, 10 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Industrial output rises again http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/industrial-output-rises-again-5825/ Ljubljana, 10 September (STA) - Slovenia's industrial production rose again in July after it fell by over 1.5% in June. It increased by 5.1% year on year and by 2.7% over June, the Statistics Office said on Tuesday. The more robust industrial output was a result of strong performance in manufacturing, which grew by 3.5% in July over June.

Meanwhile, the sectors of mining and of electricity, gas and steam supply dropped by 10.3% and 4% at the monthly level, respectively.

Industrial revenue grew as well, rising by 3% on the previous month and by 2.7% over July 2018.

The monthly rise in revenue resulted from stronger sales abroad and at home, which grew by 5% and 0.5%, respectively.

Inventories likewise increased, rising by 1.4% at the monthly level and by 4.8% year on year.

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news-5826 Tue, 10 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia's employment prospects among strongest in the region (adds) http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/slovenias-employment-prospects-among-strongest-in-the-region-adds-5826/ Ljubljana, 10 September (STA) - The employment prospects in Slovenia in the final quarter of the year remain favourable, according to the latest employment forecast by temping agency Manpower. Seasonally-adjusted net employment forecast stands at 17%, which is one of the most optimistic forecasts in the region. "Compared to the previous quarter, the employment prospect is slightly down - for two percentage points - but compared to the same period last year, the forecast remains level," sales manager at Manpower Gašper Kleč told the STA.

The employment prospect for the final quarter is two percentage points lower in quarterly comparison and remains level year-on-year.

The upbeat hiring prospects are a result of the strongest demand for labour in mining and quarrying, and the public sector and social services since the survey started nine years ago. They stand at +20% and +19%, respectively.

Among all ten industries included in the survey, the most notable hiring is expected in manufacturing (+22%) and construction (+21%).

The lowest chances of employment are expected in agriculture, forestry and fishing and the hospitality sector (at +13% each).

Geographically speaking, the strongest demand for workers is expected in the north-western region (+18%). "This is the second consecutive quarter with the employment forecast there since the survey started in 2011," Kleč said.

The hiring prospects are the strongest in middle-sized companies (+27%), while those for small companies are the highest on record (+21%).

But a gap between the demands of employers and expectations of job seekers remain. "This gap is usually created by the deviation from the desired skills or desired pay but also by the demographic changes," said regional head of Manpower Slovenija Aleksandar Hangimana.

The Manpower survey was conducted among 59,000 employers in 44 countries, 43 of whom report a positive hiring outlook for the fourth quarter.

Slovenia's employment prospects are preceded only by Greece's in this region, while globally, Japan, Taiwan, the US and India have the best net employment outlook. Spain, the Czech Republic, Argentina, Costa Rica and Switzerland are at the bottom of the list.

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news-5822 Mon, 09 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Slovenia's merchandise exports at all-time high in July http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/slovenias-merchandise-exports-at-all-time-high-in-july-5822/ Ljubljana, 09 September (STA) - Slovenia exported almost EUR 4 billion worth of goods in July, the highest monthly value on record, with the trade surplus hitting a record level of EUR 937 million, fresh statistics show. At EUR 3.962 billion, merchandise exports in July were 46.3% above the figure in the same month a year ago, while imports rose by 16.4% to EUR 3.025 billion, the Statistics Office reported.

This created the highest monthly trade surplus recorded over the past 20 years. Most of that surplus may be attributed to the surplus in trade with non-EU countries. The export/import ratio was 131%.

Exports to non-EU countries nearly trebled compared to July 2018 to hit a record EUR 1.752 billion, as imports from those countries rose by 62% to EUR 864 million, generating a surplus of EUR 887 million.

Switzerland was Slovenia's most important trading partner outside the EU with medical and pharmaceutical products accounting for the bulk of trade.

Exports to the EU markets rose by 5.6% to EUR 2.21 billion and imports increased by 4.6% to EUR 2.16 billion with a surplus of EUR 49.7 million.

Between January and July 2019, exports were up 14.6% year-on-year to EUR 20.771 billion and imports rose by 12% to EUR 19.825 billion, with a surplus at EUR 946 million and the export/import ratio of 104.8%.

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news-5823 Mon, 09 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Lek inaugurates EUR 7.5 million labs in Ljubljana http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/lek-inaugurates-eur-75-million-labs-in-ljubljana-5823/ Ljubljana, 09 September (STA) - Pharmaceutical company Lek inaugurated new development laboratories in Ljubljana on Monday in an investment valued at EUR 7.5 million. Among other drugs, they plan to develop sterile solid dosage forms to treat cancer patients. Matjaž Tršek, the director of Lek's development centre, said that work on oncology medications had been somewhat limited, while the new investment would allow them to develop the whole portfolio of these medications.

As part of the centre's expansion "existing capacities for development of solid dosage pharmaceutical forms have been expanded, including with new analysis laboratories and expansion of in vitro/in vivo correlation study laboratories," said Luka Peternel, the head of pharmaceutical development at the centre.

Tršek added that "certain new technologies have been brought ... The number of staff has increased and there has been a substantial increase in funds for research". The number of employees at the development centre has increased by about 20% since 2015 to more than 330.

According to him, the centre will also get the first fully automated analysis laboratory. "It'll be the first such laboratory in Sandoz and even Novartis," he said, referring to Lek's parent company and division. The new lab is to be completed by the end of the year.

With the launch of the new labs, Lek is wrapping up a cycle of investment in new capacities, which enhances the Ljubljana development centre's position within the global development network: "We are the largest development centre within Sandoz even now, and this only enhances our position," said Tršek.

According to Lek, the Slovenia development centre is Sandoz's leading centre for the development of technologically advanced products for key markets of Europe, United States, Canada, Japan and emerging markets of Brazil, Russia, Mexico and China.

The Slovenia development centre, responsible for a quarter of all global development projects of Sandoz, Novartis's generic arm, has developed and launched more than 100 new products over the past four years.

The investment launch today comes after Lek decided to discontinue its EUR 150 million investment in expanding antibiotics production at its Prevalje location in the north of the country.

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news-5819 Sun, 08 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Foreign companies create 27% of Slovenia's value added http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/foreign-companies-create-27-of-slovenias-value-added-5819/ Ljubljana, 08 September (STA) - Foreign companies accounted for 5.6% of all companies in Slovenia in 2017 but created over 27% of value added, roughly on a par with 2016. These companies employed almost 26% of all workers, and allocated 39% of their expenses in Slovenia for R&D, the latest Statistics Office data shows.

A foreign company, or a foreign inward affiliate, is according to the statisticians an enterprise which is resident in Slovenia but controlled by an institutional unit outside Slovenia.

There were a total of 8,018 such companies in Slovenia in 2017.

A third of all value added and a third of all investments by these companies was generated by companies controlled from Germany and Austria.

The largest share of R&D spending, a third, was generated by companies controlled from Switzerland.

Together with Germany-affiliated ones, they generated almost 60% of all R&D expenditure by foreign companies in Slovenia.

More than half of the entire value added generated by foreign companies was attributable to companies in industry.

Foreign inward affiliates in Slovenia were controlled from 106 countries, but in more than 90% of the cases from Europe. Approximately half of them had their controlling company in the EU.

The majority, or almost two-thirds of them, were controlled from Italy, Serbia, Russia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Austria, Croatia and Germany.

The Statistics Office says that economically the most important foreign affiliates were controlled from Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

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news-5820 Sun, 08 Sep 2019 00:00:00 +0200 Ljubljanske Mlekarne ups net profit by a third http://www.investslovenia.eu/news-media/business-news/ljubljanske-mlekarne-ups-net-profit-by-a-third-5820/ Ljubljana, 08 September (STA) - Ljubljanske Mlekarne, Slovenia's largest dairy, increased sales revenue by 0.6% last year to EUR 168.6 million, while net profit was up by 33.3% to EUR 6.7 million, according to the annual report filed with the AJPES agency for public records. The dairy, which has been in the ownership the French Lactalis group through Croatia's Dukat since 2013, says it managed to reduce total costs by 1.4%.

While net profit was up by a third, operating profit increased by 15.9% to EUR 7.9 million.

Ljubljanske Mlekarne, which is the largest buyer and processor of raw milk in the country, is increasing the purchase of organic milk as demand outstrips supply.

For this purpose, the company made a deal last year with the Association of Organic Farmers that it will be purchasing five million litres of organic milk a year until the end of 2020.

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