On Thursday, 17 November 2022, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia discussed the starting points for the final phase of measures to address the energy price tag for businesses and certain public institutions. In this respect, the Government set out three measures, namely:
- Preparation of legislation in the field of energy to help those consumers who are not covered by the 2023 electricity price regulation.
This legislation will fully transpose the European Regulation adopted at the end of October this year, allowing Slovenia to provide the economy with all the forms of aid allowed under European law.
- Electricity price subsidy scheme for small, medium and large enterprises and institutions for which the electricity price is not yet regulated in the coming year.
The scheme will promote energy saving. Specifically, the state will subsidize the price of electricity up to 70% of last year’s consumption, above which consumers will have to pay the market price. This means that anyone saving 30% or more will only pay the subsidized price.
- Subsidies for part-time work and temporary waiting time at home.
By subsidizing part-time work and temporary homeworking, the Government aims to help companies affected by the energy crisis. Both measures will be aimed in particular at preserving jobs. In this context, the Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities announced that it would launch an intervention scheme to subsidize part-time work and to reimburse wage compensation to workers on temporary homeworking.
The Government is planning to establish these subsidy schemes in a single intervention law for the 2023 heating season, during which time the protection of workers’ rights would also be preserved in the process of employers deciding whether to apply the measure, along the lines of the epidemic intervention measures.
According to the starting points for the preparation of the part-time subsidy measure, a decision by the Employment Service of the Republic of Slovenia is foreseen on the basis of an application from the employer. However, the aid is to be conditional on the entry conditions under the temporary framework of the European Commission and on the inability of the workers to secure work.
Also, according to the starting points for the preparation of the measure for the reimbursement of wage compensation to workers on temporary waiting lists, the Employment Service is to make a decision on the basis of an application from the employer, and the entry conditions are to be linked to a prohibition on the exercise of the activity by the State or to other objective, legally defined and determinable conditions. An alternative entry condition would be to benefit from the measure with a commitment to subsequently invest in the beneficiary’s green passage.
The Government is expected to take further action on gas price increases in the coming week, using the same method as for electricity. The laws governing these measures will enter into force on 1 January 2023.