“Well, the legal market is pretty much stable – all firms stay firmly in their places, not a lot of tectonic shift …. all is quiet on the Western front," smiles Robert Prelesnik, Senior Partner at Rojs, Peljhan, Prelesnik & Partners in Ljubljana. “Our economy has been rather stable too, even as we approach a period of slight stagnation – we are quite far away from a recession, which is a good thing in this day and age of Europe," says Prelesnik.
Indeed, Prelesnik says, Slovenia is about to conclude its second straight year with a budget surplus. “The budget was voted on and adopted just last week, and we’re due to have a steady overflow of revenues over expenditure – EUR 400 million for 2020 and EUR 650 million for 2021." This, Prelesnik says, in spite of the minority coalition government – a first in Slovenian history. “The government is – for a minority government – pretty stable," he says, “and it is on course to remain as such, although one of the unofficial coalition partners, the left-wing, has just recently declared the withdrawal of the support to the government projects – but that won’t affect anything in an adverse fashion, at least not at the moment."
Prelesnik says that business-friendly legislation may be passed soon. “Amendments to the Legal Protection in Public Procurement Procedures Act are currently in the legislative pipeline – this was a long time coming," he says. These amendments are designed to make the process more efficient and provide for the possibility of the court review in the decision-making process, which is expected to create a more attractive investment climate. “The simplifications to the public procurement process should go a long way."
Finally, talking about significant infrastructure developments, Prelesnik highlights the second railway track of the Divaca-Koper railway. “A couple of weeks ago a tender bid process was initiated for the second track of the railway, which should speed the entire undertaking up.“ He describes the railway as “the most valuable infrastructure project in the history of Slovenia," with a lot of companies in the bidding. “We’ve got some 10 or 12 companies looking to get in on the action already,“ he says, “and the application deadline for the submission of the applications in the first qualification phase is December 20. There are a couple of Spanish and Turkish firms, three or four Chinese firms, French, Austrian …. a lot of foreign capital interest, as the project is too large for a single Slovenian company to undertake it."