- Politics of Slovenia
The politics of
Sloveniatakes place in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic republic, whereby the Prime Minister of Sloveniais the head of government, and of a multi-party system. Executive poweris exercised by the government. Legislative poweris vested in the parliament.The Judiciaryis independent of the executive and the legislature.
As a young independent
republic, Sloveniapursued economic stabilizationand further political openness, while emphasizing its Western outlook and central European heritage. Today, with a growing regional profile, a participant in the SFORpeacekeeping deployment in Bosnia and the KFOR deployment in Kosovo, and a charter World Trade Organizationmember, Slovenia plays a role on the world stage quite out of proportion to its small size.
From 1998 to 2000, Slovenia occupied a nonpermanent seat on the
UN Security Counciland in that capacity distinguished itself with a constructive, creative, and consensus-oriented activism. Slovenia has been a member of the United Nationssince May 1992and of the Council of Europesince May 1993. Slovenia signed an association agreement with the European Unionin 1996 and is a member of the Central European Free Trade Agreement. Slovenia also is a member of all major international financial institutions (the International Monetary Fund, the World BankGroup, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) as well as 40 other international organizations, among them the World Trade Organization, of which it is a founding member.
Since the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, Slovenia has instituted a stable, multi-party, democratic political system, characterized by regular elections, a free press, and an excellent
human rightsrecord. By Constitution of Sloveniathe country is a parliamentary democracyand a republic. Within its government, power is shared between a directly elected president, a prime minister, and a bicameral legislature (Parliament). Parliament is composed of the 90-member National Assembly—which takes the lead on virtually all legislative issues—and the National Council, a largely advisory body composed of representatives from social, economic, professional, and local interests. The Constitutional Court has the highest power of review of legislation to ensure its consistency with Slovenia's constitution. Its nine judges are elected for 9-year terms.
In 1997, elections were held to elect both a president and representatives to Parliament's upper house, the National Council.
Milan Kučan, elected President of the Yugoslav Republic of Slovenia in 1990, led his country to independence in 1991. He was elected the first President of independent Slovenia in 1992 and again in November 1997 by a comfortable margin. Janez Drnovšekof the center-left Liberal Democratic Party of Slovenia(LDS) was reelected Prime Minister in the October 15, 2000parliamentary elections. Drnovšek's coalition held an almost two-thirds majority in Parliament.
The government, most of the Slovenian polity, shares a common view of the desirability of a close association with the West, specifically of membership in both the European Union and
NATO. For all the apparent bitterness that divides left and right wings, there are few fundamental philosophical differences between them in the area of public policy. Slovenian society is built on consensus, which has converged on a social-democrat model. Political differences tend to have their roots in the roles that groups and individuals played during the years of communist rule and the struggle for independence.
As the most prosperous republic of the former Yugoslavia, Slovenia emerged from its brief ten-day war of secession in 1991 as an independent nation for the first time in its history. Since that time, the country has made steady but cautious progress toward developing a market economy. Economic reforms introduced shortly after independence led to healthy economic growth. Despite the halting pace of reform and signs of slowing GDP growth today, Slovenians now enjoy the highest
per capitaincome of all the transition economies of central Europe.
The Slovenians have pursued internal economic restructuring with caution. The first phase of
privatization(socially owned property under the SFRY system) is now complete, and sales of remaining large state holdings are planned for next year. Trade has been diversified toward the West (trade with EU countries make up 66% of total trade in 2000) and the growing markets of central and eastern Europe. Manufacturing accounts for most employment, with machinery and other manufactured products comprising the major exports. Labor force surveys put unemployment at approximately 6.6% (Dec. 2000), with 106,153 registrations for unemployment assistance. Inflationhas remained below double-digit levels, 6.1% (1999) and 8.9% (2000). Gross domestic product grew by about 4.8% in 2000 and is expected to post a slightly lower rate of 4.5% in 2001, as export demand lags. The currency is stable, fully convertible, and backed by substantial reserves. The economy provides citizens with a good standard of living.
Ten years after independence, Slovenia has made tremendous progress establishing democratic institutions, enshrining respect for human rights, establishing a
market economyand adapting its military to Western norms and standards. In contrast to its neighbors, civil tranquility and strong economic growth have marked this period. Upon achieving independence, Slovenia offered citizenship to all residents, regardless of ethnicity or origin, avoiding a sectarian trap that has caught out many central European countries. Slovenia willingly accepted refugees from the fighting in Bosnia and has since participated in international stabilization efforts in the region.
On the international front, Slovenia has advanced rapidly toward integration into the Euro-Atlantic community of nations. Invited to begin accession negotiations with the European Union in November 1998, Slovenia has achieve two of its primary foreign policy goals: membership in the EU and NATO. Slovenia also participates in the Southeast Europe Cooperation Initiative (SECI).
Slovenia remains firmly committed to achieving NATO membership in a second round of enlargement. Slovenia has been an active participant in Partnership for Peace (PfP) and has sought to demonstrate its preparedness to take on the responsibilities and burdens of membership in the Alliance. The
United Stateslooks to Slovenia to play a productive role in continuing security efforts throughout the region. It has done muchndash contributing to the success of IFOR, SFOR, efforts in Albania, the Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Kosovo, and elsewherendash and has continued to expand actively its constructive regional engagement.
Slovenia is one of the focus countries for the United States' southeast European policy, aimed at reinforcing regional stability and integration. The Slovenian Government is well-positioned to be an influential role model for other southeast European governments at different stages of reform and integration. To these ends, the United States urges Slovenia to maintain momentum on internal economic, political, and legal reforms, while expanding their international cooperation as resources allow. Although harmonization with EU law and standards will require great efforts, already underway, the EU accession process will serve to advance Slovenia's structural reform agenda. U.S. and Allied efforts to assist Slovenia's military restructuring and modernization efforts are ongoing.
constitutionwas adopted on 23 December 1991, effective 23 December 1991.
23 December 2007
9 November 2004The president is elected by popular vote for a five-year term. Following National Assembly elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of a majority coalition is usually nominated to become prime minister by the president and elected by the National Assembly. The Council of Ministers is nominated by the prime minister and elected by the National Assembly.
The National Assembly ("Državni zbor") has 90 members, elected for a four year term, 88 members elected by
proportional representationusing D'Hondt formula and 2 members elected by ethnic minorities using the Borda count.
Political parties and elections
Slovenia is divided into 210
municipalities, of which 11 are urban municipalities with a greater degree of autonomy.
International organization participation
Slovenia is member of BIS, CCC, CE, CEI, EAPC, EBRD, ECE, EU, FAO, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, NAM (guest),
NATO, OPCW, OSCE, PCA, PFP, SECI, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNFICYP, UNIDO, UNTSO, UPU, WEU (associate partner), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO
* [http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2005/61675.htm US State Department Report on Human Rights Practices - 2005]
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