The Bank’s current strategy places insolvency and restructuring and energy efficiency and renewable energy at the forefront of the bank’s legal reform efforts in the country.
- Access to Finance
- Capital Markets
- Contract Enforcement and Judicial Capacity
- Corporate Governance
- Debt restructuring and bankruptcy
- Electronic Communications
- Energy and resource efficiency
- Energy legal and regulatory reform
- Public Procurement
Access to Finance
The Slovenian secured transactions legal framework displays many of the features of modern legislation, but still contains important limitations, which may prevent sophisticated commercial transactions from being properly secured, especially if the collateral is not real estate.
In 2014 the EBRD conducted an assessment on secured transactions which examined the availability of collateralising different types of assets regardless of the underlying legal instruments used to achieve the establishment of secured creditor’s rights. In addition to the classic security interests (pledges and mortgages the assessment also covered usual types of quasi security, such as sale and lease back transactions. The assessment also covered related issues such as enforcement and syndicated lending. The links below take you to the assessment results for Slovenia.
Despite Euro- membership, Slovenian capital markets continue to lack depth and liquidity. Following the adoption of the EU acquis communautaire securities market legislation complies with high international standards. The Slovenian bond market is comparatively bigger than its peers and is predominated by public issuance. Since the adoption of the euro in 2007, the infrastructure of government bond market was further integrated to the EU market and the money market is linked to the broader Euro-area money market.
Contract Enforcement and Judicial Capacity
The Legal Transition Team conducted an assessment of judicial decisions in 2010, during which it found that decisions in Slovenia were considered to be more or less predictable.
According to the results of a 2007 EBRD Corporate Governance Sector Assessment (see charts below), which assessed the quality of corporate governance legislation in force in November 2007; Slovenia was in “high compliance” with the OECD Principles of Corporate Governance.
Debt restructuring and bankruptcy
The Financial Operations, Insolvency Proceedings and Compulsory Dissolution Act (as amended, IPA) is the framework legislation governing insolvency of business entities in Slovenia.
Based on the results of the assessment, a partially developed legal framework appears to exist for the IOH profession in Slovenia, which prima facie, displays certain strengths. Nevertheless, such a framework would benefit from further improvements to address certain important areas of weaknesses and thus improve IOH capacity and performance.
The main legal basis for electronic communications regulation is the Electronic Communications Act.
Amendments to transpose the EU 2009 regulatory framework came into force in January 2010 and May 2011, but did not fully align the legislation with the EU 2009 regulatory framework. In November 2011 the responsible ministry consulted on a new draft Electronic Communications Act that will complete transposition.
Energy and resource efficiency
The most recent 2008 amendments to the Energy Act focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency promotion, including provisions improving the process for support of renewable energy facilities and creating the framework for new regulations for guarantees of origin and procedures for support of qualified producers, meaning those producers who receive state support in various incentive forms for renewable energy production. Slovenia ratified the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in 2002 and committed itself to a reduction by 2012 of greenhouse gas emissions of 8% from the base year of 1986. Slovenia’s energy intensity is much higher than the EU average. The Government supports the EU’s emission trading system in which Slovenia participates.
Energy legal and regulatory reform
The Government and the Ministry of Economy (Ministry) are the policy-makers for
the energy sector. The Energy Agency (Agency) is the implementing regulatory
agency. While the electricity sector remains primarily (80%) state-owned, and market potential remains currently tempered by limited cross-border capacity and reliance on imports, private participation in the market is slowly increasing, an EU-compliant regulatory framework is in place., and a switch to a new regional energy exchange could facilitate cross-border trade. The Slovenian market for natural gas is similarly fully open and compliant with EU unbundling requirements, and state-dominated, with other participants emerging. While dependent almost entirely on imported gas, that dependence is split, with only half from Russia, and Slovenia’s location and well developed pipeline connections with Italy, Austria and Croatia provide options and opportunities for further market development.
Slovenia in 2007 modernised its Public Private Partnership (PPP) policy, institutional and legal frameworks, which compare favourably with those in other EBRD countries of operations. The Slovenian Public-Private Partnership Act (the “PPP Act”), enacted in 2007, is a fairly comprehensive piece of legislation, regulating both contractual and institutional PPPs. The PPP Act refers to contractual PPPs as relations based on either concessions or public procurement and applies to both services concessions and works concessions, including BOT (“build, operate, transfer”) schemes. However, due to its expressly subsidiary nature the Act needs to be consulted in combination with other sector laws and general laws (e.g. the Public Procurement Act or the Public Utilities Act) to ascertain exactly which rules should apply. This approach may not necessarily prove the most attractive for investors and the act remain complex and confuse on many issues. Slovenia was rated as being in high compliance with international standards in the 2012 assessment.
Public procurement is regulated by a combination of several laws. The Public Procurement Act, which covers government procurement, was adopted in 2006 before being amended in 2008 and 2010. The Public Procurement in Water Management, Energy, Transport and Postal Services Area Act, which covers utilities procurement, was also adopted in 2006 and amended in 2008 and 2010. Finally, the Auditing of Public Procurement Act, which provides for monitoring of public procurement, was adopted in 1999 and amended every year since.
In summary, Slovenian PP mechanisms are seen as sufficiently accountable and transparent, but the operational efficiency of the process could be improved.
- Public Procurement Sector Assessment 2010 – country profiles