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October 22, 2021

Slovenia celebrated its national day

by  H.E. Mrs. Jadranka Surm Kocjan, Ambassador of Slovenia in Romania

Slovenian nation aspired for independence since the late 19th century. The idea of a completely independent Slovenian political entity finally ripened in the second half of the 1980s and was confirmed at a plebiscite in December 1990, in which 88.2% of Slovenian citizens voiced their support for an independent and sovereign state. Slovenia proclaimed its independence on 25th of June 1991. Twenty two years ago, we committed ourselves to democracy, freedom, respect for human dignity and rights, respect for minorities and immigrants, openness and cooperation with others.
A year after the plebiscite, in December of 1991 and January 1992, Slovenia achieved broad international recognition, among which was that of Romania. It took place on 18th of January 1992. Diplomatic relations between the two countries were established in August of the same year. On 22 May 1992 the Republic of Slovenia became the 176th Member State of the UN.
One of Slovenia’s immediate priority goals in foreign policy were NATO and EU memberships. Both were successfully achieved in the year 2004. Merely four years later, in the first semester of 2008, Slovenia became the first among the newly adhered EU members to hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. In 2007, we entered the Euro zone and became full members of the Schengen area.
Slovenian foreign policy makers of today are faced with new challenges, with economic diplomacy at the forefront. The current objectives of Slovenian foreign policy include stimulation of the process of internationalization of the Slovenian economy, finding new markets for Slovenian companies and assisting companies in their search for tangible business opportunities. Accordingly, the Government has transferred the responsibility for economic diplomacy to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. With a view to realizing all the set objectives, the Ministry established a separate directorate, enhanced the network of economic representatives (currently 24 economic advisers are appointed within the foreign service system), and engaged its honorary consuls. Economic interests present a key component of present Slovenian foreign policy.
Slovenia lies in the very heart of Europe, where the Alps meet the Mediterranean, and the Panonian Plain meets the Karst. The changing landscape is constantly surprising. You can let your gaze run over the blue sea, than just look in the other direction and find yourself surrounded by high mountains. Its capital city Ljubljana, is positioned almost precisely in the centre of the country, so all its beauties are within your reach, requiring a two hour car drive at the most. Slovenia is proud on its biological diversity. Over 24.000 animal species live within its borders, making it one of the most diverse countries in the world. It is also one of the greenest in Europe, surpassed by only two other countries with more forest covered surface. Over one third of Slovenia’s territory is protected and included in the Europe-wide Natura 2000 network.
Immediately after achieving independence, Slovenia began its successful path of rapid growth and development. For a long time, it was considered as a true success story in the wider region. Unfortunately, the global economic crisis took its toll on Slovenia as well. Swift and painful measures were necessary to balance its public spending.
Slovenia and Romania developed and maintain good economic cooperation. According to the Slovenian statistics, the volume of trade in goods between the two countries amounted to 444.8 million EUR in 2012 a 19.6% decrease in comparison with 2011. Slovenian exports to Romania in 2012 reached 299.6 million EUR and recorded a decrease of 14.6% compared to 2011. Import from Romania has decreased by 19.3% and stands at 145.1 million EUR. The same dynamics apply to the data available for the first trimester of 2013. However, there is still ample room for further enhancement of economic and trade relations, taking into consideration the traditionally good relations between the two countries.
Slovenia and Romania are states, bonded by friendship, with traditionally good political and economic relations. Both have a lot of common question to as kind answers to offer within the broader framework of the European Union and NATO alliance. Bilateral relations are developing excellently, especially in the economic exchange. Admittedly in the last two years, its pace slowed down due to the global recession. In this respect, we all are making tremendous efforts to bring the economic cooperation trends on their former levels and beyond. In this respect, Slovenia fully and continuously support Romania on its way into Schengen area and the Euro zone.

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