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Minister Han and the Irish Minister for Enterprise, Richmond, Engage in Talks About Bolstering Economic Cooperation

Credits: Business Post

Minister Matjaž Han recently met with Neale Richmond, the Minister for Enterprise, Trade, and Employment of the Republic of Ireland, in Ljubljana.

Their discussions focused on enhancing bilateral cooperation between Slovenia and Ireland and addressing key European issues about competitiveness, the future trajectory of European industry, and the EU internal market.

During the meeting, Minister Han underscored the excellent relations between the two countries while emphasizing the abundant opportunities for further economic collaboration.

Irish Minister for Enterprise (Credits: The Irish Sun)

He warmly welcomed Minister Richmond’s visit to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia, recognizing it as a positive step toward fostering closer economic ties.

The ministers delved into pertinent European matters, particularly emphasizing the need for a revamped industrial policy to bolster the EU’s strategic independence and global competitiveness.

Minister Han emphasized the necessity for the EU to streamline regulations and alleviate burdens on industries, thereby incentivizing companies to relocate industrial production back to Europe.

Identifying several challenges plaguing the European economy, the ministers highlighted issues such as the sluggish functioning of capital markets, the dearth of venture capital for emerging enterprises, demographic concerns, and labor shortages.

Minister Han stressed the imperative of implementing more flexible state aid regulations to invigorate European industry while concurrently eliminating unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles.

Irish Minister for Enterprise (Credits: Business Post)

Minister Richmond echoed these sentiments, cautioning against the overreliance on third-country economies and advocating for a strategic focus on the EU’s inherent strengths and opportunities.

He emphasized the importance of investing in skill development in emerging areas like digitalization, artificial intelligence, and space technologies, alongside bolstering research and development efforts.

Minister Han underscored Slovenia’s industrial prowess in economic sectors, particularly in energy-intensive industries, aerospace, automotive, digital technologies, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology.

Ireland was identified as a promising market for Slovenian companies, with significant potential for collaboration in high-tech and green sectors such as renewable energy, AI, cybersecurity, forestry, ICT, and e-mobility.

Both ministers recognized the untapped potential in tourism, advocating for establishing regular air links between Slovenia and Ireland.

They acknowledged Irish tourists’ preferences for active nature-based holidays and spa tourism, aligning with Slovenia’s offerings in these domains.

The meeting between Minister Matjaž Han and Minister Neale Richmond underscored a shared commitment to fostering deeper economic cooperation between Slovenia and Ireland while also addressing critical European challenges and exploring avenues for mutual growth and development.

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