At Thursday’s meeting of the EU summit, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel informed the colleagues from the other member states that in the coming days, she would try to find an acceptable solution in talks with Poland and Hungary, in order to approve the Union’s recovery package for the COVID-19 epidemic. According to Merkel, Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša was also one of the people who called for a compromise. “Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša once again called on everyone to try and find a compromise, which is, of course, what the Germany presidency wants as well,” she said. So, the truth is completely different from what the media outlets in Slovenia tried to make us believe, as their reports were the exact opposite, and they were trying to create the impression that the Slovenian Prime Minister is causing discord and bringing shame to our nation.
An informal video conference of the representatives of the European Council took place on Thursday, and it was also attended by the Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša. The discussion among the members of the European Council focused on the issue of testing and the mutual recognition of tests, including the rapid antigen tests, vaccine development, preparation for vaccination, logistical conditions, and national vaccination strategies. All of the leaders welcomed the common approach towards financing the development and joint procurement of vaccines, which is being implemented by the Commission for all Member States.
The Prime Minister presented the situation in Slovenia during its second wave of the coronavirus epidemic. Fortunately, in recent days the number of people that have left the hospitals was higher than the number of those newly infected who needed hospital treatment. However, the number of infected people is still very high. We have started introducing rapid testing in Slovenia, and we are also preparing a national vaccination program. Reliable predictions about when the vaccine will be available and when it will be available in large quantities, are very important for the planning of the measures and also because of the effect on the general public perception. If the vaccine is not be available in large quantities soon, then Slovenia will probably carry out general testing, similar to what was done in Slovakia, in order to try to limit and stop the spread of the epidemic as much as possible and prepare targeted measures, based on the results of the testing.
Janša: We need to find a compromise, in line with the July agreement
At the meeting, the German Presidency also presented the state of negotiations for the final approval of the Multiannual Financial Framework and the Recovery Package. Prime Minister Janez Janša pointed out that a very important agreement had been reached with joint efforts in July, and that a final compromise now needs to be reached, based on the July agreement. Regarding the conditionality of the rule of law, he pointed out that the final assessment must always be in the hands of the EU Court of Justice; otherwise, it would actually be a political decision, which is not in line with the principles of the rule of law. Slovenia is ready to offer concrete ideas in finding ways to compromise. The President of the European Council, Charles Michel, emphasized that we needed an agreement between all the Member States and that efforts for it would continue.