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Slovenia's development strategy should have more focus on innovation, says advisory body

An advisory body has urged the Slovene government to give its development strategy more of a focus, and to prioritise innovation. The Strategic Council for Economic Development advises the Slovene government on key economic matters. The government's development strategy, on w...

An advisory body has urged the Slovene government to give its development strategy more of a focus, and to prioritise innovation. The Strategic Council for Economic Development advises the Slovene government on key economic matters. The government's development strategy, on which the council gave its preliminary opinion on 28 January, falls into this category. The draft strategy is along the right lines, but needs some clarifications, vice-chair of the strategic council Joze Damijan told press after a meeting on the strategy. The document must state clearly a small number of development priorities, along with measurable objectives and responsible departments or bodies, said Dr Damijan. In particular, it must make provisions for money to be used efficiently for innovation and economic development, he said. This focus on innovation should encompass improving the quality of higher education in Slovenia, and forging closer ties between universities and the private sector, he explained. The government should also draft a proposal on the creation of a favourable business environment, promoting promising investment, cutting red tape, and the withdrawal of the state from companies, claimed Dr Damijan. The council debated a proposed bill on public-private partnership during its meeting. The government proposal is aimed at attracting private funds to various state projects. Further recommendations from the strategic council relate to the modernisation of Slovenia's social security system and regulation of the labour market, which Dr Damijan believes will boost both economic activity and employment.

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