Prime Minister Janez Janša was on a working visit to the southern part of the Osrednjeslovenska statistical region. The Government paid a visit to the municipalities of Borovnica, Brezovica, Dobrepolje, Dobrova – Polhov Gradec, Grosuplje, Horjul, Ig, Ivančna Gorica, Logatec, Log – Dragomer, Škofljica, Šmartno pri Litiji, Velike Lašče and Vrhnika.
The southern part of the Osrednjeslovenska Region is known for its well-preserved and accessible nature, rich biodiversity and diverse landscape. Stretching out between Ljubljana, Vrhnika, Ig and Škofljica lies a 150 square kilometre-wide plain called the Ljubljana Marshes. It has only begun to be recognised as an area of exceptional natural and cultural heritage in the last few decades. Other natural wonders in this area include Radensko polje, Rakitna, Polhograjsko hribovje, Planinsko polje, Krim, etc. The region has many rivers and waterfalls (e.g. Iški vintgar, Močilnik and Soteska Pekel) and therefore boasts many walking and cycle trails and Karst phenomena. Cultural attractions include the remnants of the Southern Railway, the Borovnica Viaduct, a rich sacral heritage with an abundance of churches (notably the Cistercian Monastery in Stična), manors and castles, most prominently Turjak Castle and Bogenšperk Castle. Among the museums, the Carniolan Bee House and the Technical Museum of Slovenia are well worth visiting, as is the cultural heritage of notable Slovenians born in this area: Josip Jurčič, Primož Trubar and Ivan Cankar.
In 2020, the 14 municipalities comprising the southern part of the Osrednjeslovenska Region had 7,220 enterprises, of which 3,822 were companies and 3,398 were sole traders, namely 17% of all enterprises in the Osrednjeslovenska Region, and employed 23,290 people, or 11% of all employees in the region. The highest business activity was recorded in the municipalities of Grosuplje, with 17% of all enterprises (with respect to only these 14 municipalities in the Osrednjeslovenska Region), Vrhnika (13%), Brezovica, Ivančna Gorica and Logatec (in each municipality, 11% of enterprises). Enterprises in these 14 municipalities of the Osrednjeslovenska Region generated a total of EUR 3.4 billion in revenue and nearly EUR 1 billion in added value, or 9% of the added value generated in the Osrednjeslovenska Region. In 2020, 5,196 enterprises or 72% of all enterprises operating in these 14 municipalities of the Osrednjeslovenska Region recorded a positive operating result (a net operating profit in the case of companies and entrepreneurs, income in the case of sole traders). According to the Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia for December 2021, the southern part of the Osrednjeslovenska Region had an active population of 39,134 people (by job location), which is 1,977 persons or 5.3% more than in December 2020.
In the morning, the members of the Government met for a working consultation in the Municipality of Grosuplje, where the ministerial team was welcomed by the Mayor of Grosuplje, Dr Peter Verlič, who in his opening address pointed out that he shared the view of other mayors in the region that a major breakthrough had been made under the current Government, which has allocated more lump-sum funding and more European funds to municipalities. “This year we have a record municipal budget of EUR 30 million,” said Dr Verlič, who thanked the Government for these funds on his own behalf and on behalf of the Municipality of Grosuplje. Dr Verlič also said that the Government’s response to the corona virus crisis has been effective. He pointed out that the Municipality of Grosuplje is currently investing over EUR 30 million of state and European funds in improving the lives of the residents of the municipality.
At the working consultation, the ministers discussed a number of outstanding issues, in particular, investment projects in the region, the absorption of cohesion and EU funds, economic opportunities, education, investments in the field of culture, the operation of the police and home affairs in the region, healthcare and health investments, the labour market, and in particular long-term care. They also touched upon the prison system and probation. Special attention was focused on the construction of transport infrastructure and agricultural issues. The ministerial team also took note of the most important statistics and indicators for the southern part of the Osrednjeslovenska statistical region.
Following a group photo, Prime Minister Janša and the ministers proceeded with their separate schedules. During the visit, the Prime Minister and ministers met with representatives of businesses, institutions, municipalities and other stakeholders in the region.
Before the meeting of the entire ministerial team, the Prime Minister met with the Mayor of Grosuplje, Dr Peter Verlič. The Mayor took the opportunity to present to the Prime Minister his vision and some ideas for major projects for the future development of the region. He highlighted two priority projects: the Grosuplje bypass with its proposed siting and Grosuplje as a university town with the proposed location of a faculty and student campus.
After a working consultation with the entire ministerial team, Prime Minister Janša, together with the Minister of Health, Janez Poklukar, visited the Šentvid pri Stična Children’s Hospital. There is also a daily care centre for the elderly on the Hospital’s premises.
The Prime Minister visited the hospital’s premises and met with the management team, which presented the new construction project and thanked both the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health for the exceptional support the hospital has received during the current term of office.
A tour of the hospital was followed by a short ceremony with the unveiling of the cornerstone for the new hospital. Upon the unveiling, the Prime Minister expressed his pleasure that, as of today, a project is being launched to provide the hospital with the necessary capacities to meet the prescribed standards.
“You have achieved results in difficult conditions and I sincerely thank all of you who have lovingly taken care of the youngest, who need special care and attention,” said the Prime Minister. He also thanked them for their willingness to help during the pandemic. “You came to the rescue as soon as we started looking for facilities, which you made readily available along with patient care at a time when we were looking for every free bed in Slovenia. We would like to express our appreciation to the nurses who volunteered to help the Clinical Centre and to the members of the leadership for their ambitions, because without these ambitions and efforts to gain support for the financing of the project, this cornerstone would not exist today,” said the Prime Minister.
He went on to say that there is currently a huge amount of investment in the health care sector. “Unfortunately, wherever we are embarking on new projects, we are faced with problems, including unresolved land register issues and things that we cannot even imagine, but we are committed to solving them, and the Government’s visits to the regions concerned also help to move things forward,” said the Prime Minister.
“The Government and the competent ministries will try to resolve in the shortest possible time everything we have heard in discussions with the leadership. The project of new hospital capacities, for which purpose the cornerstone was unveiled, is in progress, and the funds have been guaranteed, so that you will finally be provided with the working conditions you deserve and which are needed by the youngest, who require our greatest care, which is something that can only be given by those who have it in their hearts,” said the Prime Minister, adding: “Thank you for your love for the youngest, and I am sure that we will soon take that last step when the new hospital premises are opened, providing the conditions you have sought in recent decades, even when will, courage and resources may have run out. Yet all this has now been taken care of and I’m delighted that we have taken that step today.”
In continuation, Prime Minister Janez Janša, accompanied by the Mayor of the Municipality of Ivančna Gorica, visited the construction site of a new kindergarten in Šentvid pri Stična.
The visit was followed by a working lunch with Ministers Matej Tonin, Jernej Vrtovec, Vasko Simoniti, Andrej Vizjak and State Secretary Monika Kirbiš Rojs and the Mayors of the Municipalities of Grosuplje, Ivančna Gorica, Dobrepolje and Vrhnika. The talks focused on the development potential of the region.
In further course of the day, Prime Minister Janša, together with the Minister of Digital Transformation, Mark Boris Andrijanič, visited the company MI Elektronika, d. o. o., where he met with the company’s management and was shown the construction of their new business, production and storage facility. The discussions held with the company’s management focused on the before-mentioned investment and its contribution to the growth and development of the company.
In Vrhnika, Prime Minister Janša met with its Mayor Danijel Cukjati to discuss current opportunities in the Osredjneslovenska Region and the projects in progress in Vrhnika.
Prime Minister Janša concluded his regional visit at a public debate on the development of the Osrednjeslovenska statistical region.