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Development Report: Measures for a gradual restart of the economy and stabilisation of the economic and social situation should be designed in such a way that they will also address Slovenia’s key development challenges

In March 2020, a coronavirus epidemic was declared in Slovenia, which, with its enormous negative socio-economic impact on the economic and social situation, will significantly change the baselines for the realisation of the Slovenian Development Strategy 2030 (SDS), which is monitored by the Development Report – an annual publication prepared by the Institute of Macroeconomic Analysis and Development. As a consequence of the urgent protective measures, the current situation will have a significant negative impact on economic activity. At the same time, it has also shown that in some areas where Slovenia has not taken appropriate measures in the past or where progress has been too slow, it has become even more vulnerable during the period of the epidemic (e.g. a high share of precarious jobs, no systemic regulation of long-term care, waiting times in health care, lack of digital skills among the population, administrative barriers and the length of certain procedures). In the short term, an absolute priority is measures to support the functioning of the health system and, in the economic area, measures to alleviate the consequences of the epidemic, which will help businesses and the population bridge liquidity problems due to loss of income and ensure, to the greatest possible extent, the preservation of jobs and social potential. The measures for a gradual revival of the economy and stabilisation of the economic and social situation should be designed in a way that they will, as far as possible, also be oriented towards solving Slovenia’s key development challenges, which are analysed in our Development Report 2020.

Slovenia’s key development challenges

 

Among Slovenia’s main long-term development challenges analysed in the Development Report 2020, we highlight the following areas:  

-    Accelerating productivity growth by increased investment in (i) R&D and innovation, (ii) digital transformation and industry 4.0, (iii) knowledge or ensuring appropriately qualified human resources, in particular the so-called skills and competences of the future, and (iv) infrastructure for digital connectivity and sustainable development;
-    Adapting to demographic change by (I) reforming social protection systems in such a way as to ensure high-quality health and long-term care services and adequate income, (ii) ensuring a sufficient workforce, (iii) strengthening lifelong learning and adapting workplaces to allow older people to remain active longer and to better integrate into society, and (iv) promoting healthy lifestyles;
-    Transitioning to a low-carbon circular economy by: (i) speeding up the introduction of solutions for more sustainable mobility, (ii) introducing low-carbon and circular business models, including more efficient dealing with waste disposal problems, and (iii) significantly increasing capacity for greater use of renewable energy sources, particularly by more efficient siting of new development projects.
-    Strengthening the developmental role of the government and its institutions by: (i) improving the strategic governance of public institutions to be able to identify development challenges early and to address them in a coordinated and effective manner, (ii) improving the legislative and business environment, and (iii) restructuring general government revenue and expenditure in line with development challenges.

 

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