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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure SI-2020-23/2124 – measures in Slovenia

Removing obstacles to the implementation of significant investments

Pomembne investicije za zagon gospodarstva po epidemij

Country Slovenia , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 31 May 2020 – 31 December 2022
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Promoting the economic, labour market and social recovery
– Support for spending, stimulus packages
Author Maja Breznik (University of Ljubljana) and Eurofound
Measure added 09 January 2022 (updated 31 January 2022)

Background information

The tenth COVID-19 emergency law (ZDUPŠOP), issued on 29 December 2021, extends the validity of the Intervention Act to Remove Obstacles to the Implementation of Significant Investments to Start the Economy After the COVID-19 Epidemic (IZOOPIZG) until 31 December 2022. The law concerned enables investors to obtain building permits under the fast-track procedure for ‘significant investments’. The measure aims to boost the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic. The government prepared the first list of 187 investments in June 2020. It was subsequently updated and now consists of 349 projects. Some investments from the list were selected for the Slovenian Recovery and Resilience Plan.

Content of measure

The Intervention Act to Remove Obstacles to the Implementation of Significant Investments to Start the Economy After the COVID-19 Epidemic (IZOOPIZG), issued on 30 May 2020, specifies the rules for investments to obtain the status of priority projects. Priority status facilitates obtaining building permits under the fast-track procedure. Public administration is obliged to prioritize the decision-making procedures when priority investments are concerned. By accelerating administrative processes, it is expected that investments would mitigate the negative consequences of the pandemic and boost economic recovery.

The Coordination Group, appointed by the Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning, selects the investment projects. Eligible investments must have guaranteed financing from either private or public sources. Moreover, they must comply with national or European strategic policy goals and exceed the value of €5 million for projects started in 2020 or €25 million in 2021.

For investments selected by the Coordination Group, public administration must issue opinions, consents, permits and other documents as a matter of priority. If the local authority cannot provide priority treatment, the Coordination Group can allocate the decision-making power to another local authority. All court proceedings concerning issuing building permits are also urgent, priority matters.

Use of measure

Although the measure targeted investments, which would start in 2020 and 2021, many administrative procedures have not been concluded yet. In November 2021, The Ministry for Environment and Spatial Planning wrote that the ministry alone currently decides on 91 building permit requests (ZDUPŠOP draft law, p. 42). The reason for the delay was that the Coordination Group added 162 more investments to the original list from 2020. Among 349 projects, 43 are environment projects, 38 energy investments, 91 investments into transport infrastructure and 177 into regional development. Due to delays and new projects on the list, the tenth COVID-19 emergency law extended the measure until 31 December 2022.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown

Involvement

The measure was adopted without prior negotiations with social partners either in 2020 or in 2022

Views and reactions

Employer organization GZS (The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia) firmly supports the measure claiming reduced administrative obstacles will help the economy recover after the pandemic (MMC, 2020). Moreover, investments into the wear and tear of rail and road infrastructure except for highways are more than welcome.

The Confederation of Slovenian Trade Unions PERGAM succeeded to persuade deputies to vote for an article that obliges investors and their subcontractors to adhere to the Collective agreement for the construction industry (Počivalšek, 2020, p. 6). Thus, all investors of priority projects as defined in the The Intervention Act to Remove Obstacles to the Implementation of Significant Investments to Start the Economy After the COVID-19 Epidemic (IZOOPIZG) must respect the collective agreement for the construction industry.

Sources

  • 18 June 2020: ‘Na seznamu pomembnih investicij 187 projektov v vrednosti 7,7 milijarde evrov’ (The list of significant investments includes 187 projects worth 7.7 billion euros), MMC RTV SL (www.rtvslo.si)
  • 31 August 2020: Jakob Počivavšek, ‘Socialni dialog v času med in po epidemiji koronavirusa COVID-19’ (Social dialogue during the COVID-19 epidemic and after), Pergamov obveščevalec, August 202 (sindikat-pergam.si)
  • 30 May 2021: Intervention Act to Remove Obstacles to the Implementation of Significant Investments to Start the Economy After the COVID-19 Epidemic (Interventni zakon za odpravo ovir pri izvedbi pomembnih investicij za zagon gospodarstva po epidemiji COVID-19, IZOOPIZG (pisrs.si)
  • 16 November 2021: Act on Additional Measures to Stop Spreading and Mitigate, Control, Recover and Eliminate the Consequences of COVID-19 (ZDUPŠOP draft law (www.gov.si)
  • 29 December 2021: Act on Additional Measures to Stop Spreading and Mitigate, Control, Recover and Eliminate the Consequences of COVID-19 (Zakon o dodatnih ukrepih za preprečevanje širjenja, omilitev, obvladovanje, okrevanje in odpravo posledic COVID-19, ZDUPŠOP), Official Gazette, No. 206/200 (www.pisrs.si)

Citation

Eurofound (2022), Removing obstacles to the implementation of significant investments, measure SI-2020-23/2124 (measures in Slovenia), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/SI-2020-23_2124.html

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