cee legislation tracker: slovenia

19 June 2020 | newsletters

Status as of 24/06 12:00 CET

Table of contents

Note: recently updated content is highlighted in grey 

This legislation tracker provides a high-level overview of selected key legislative measures available and in effect in Slovenia as of the relevant cut-off date. It does not provide an exhaustive overview of all legislative measures adopted nor a comprehensive description of the measures discussed herein. The tracker does not take into account specifics of individual cases nor serve as a substitute for comprehensive legal advice.

31/05: State of epidemics effectively revoked / withdrawn. Various measures nevertheless continue in effect

1 Financial Support Measures

1.1 State guarantee scheme for certain bank loans to business

01/05: the Republic of Slovenia implemented a EUR 2 billion state guarantee scheme as security for obligations arising out of certain loans / credit facilities granted by domestic banks to certain business-sector borrowers

Eligible lender banks; eligible borrowers

  • Lender banks: state guarantee secures (certain) loans granted by Slovenian banks and passported branches of EU banks
  • Borrowers: eligible for guarantee-secured loans are all legal and natural persons qualifying as micro, small, middle or large enterprises within the meaning of EU Regulation 651/2014 on declaring certain categories of state aid compatible with the internal market
  • Exception: banks and other financial institutions (incl. insurers) are not eligible borrowers of guarantee-secured loans

Coverage

  • Per-case limit: the guarantee covers 70% – 80% of the (limited) loan principal amount (depending on size of enterprise)
  • General limit: the guarantee scheme covers a maximum amount of EUR 2 billion in aggregate loan principal amounts

(Selected) conditions for loan to be eligible for security by state guarantee

  • Only loan agreements concluded between 12/03 and 31/12/2020; principal maturity not exceeding 5 years
  • Principal amount covered is limited: capped at 10% of borrower's 2019 turnover, and must not exceed borrower's 2019 labor / personnel costs; if the borrower has been granted moratorium on any of its loans (see section further below), this is taken into account
  • Loan granted solely for purpose of financing the borrower's principal business activity, or for refinancing loans granted between 12/03 and 01/05 (but otherwise conforming to equivalent conditions)

(Selected) conditions for borrower to be eligible for security by state guarantee (further conditions apply)

  • The borrower is facing liquidity issues after 31/12/2019, due to epidemic-related circumstances within the territory of Slovenia
  • By 31/12/2019, the borrower was not an 'undertaking in difficulty' within the meaning of EU Regulation 651/2014
  • The loan must not be used to finance affiliated / foreign entities
  • The borrower observes due fiscal and other payment discipline towards credit institutions and regarding taxes, social contributions and other public duties, incl. if tax obligations have been restructured (see Tax & Duties below)

Seniority; distribution of losses

  • If the borrower becomes subject to insolvency proceedings, any unsecured part of the loan is considered senior and has repayment priority among unsecured claims (the same applies for recourse claims of the Republic of Slovenia if guarantee is drawn)
  • The guarantee may only be drawn provided any losses (eg. due to default) be distributed between the lender bank and the Republic of Slovenia on a pro rata basis, under equivalent terms

Drawing the guarantee; transferring secured loans

  • If the borrower defaults and the lender bank seeks to draw the guarantee, it will receive payment in either (i) immediately available fiscal funds, (ii) Republic of Slovenia bonds, or (iii) Slovenian Export & Development Bank bonds, depending on size of borrower enterprise (and the applicable state strategy on public debt management)
  • Before calling an event of default, the lender bank may offer to transfer the loan receivable (outstanding principal, in the guarantee-covered part) to the Slovenian Export & Development Bank, in exchange for Slovenian Export & Development Bank bonds

Limitations for borrower; annual premium

  • In the period between granting of the guarantee-secured loan and expiry of guarantee, the borrower must not pay out dividends, grant performance bonuses to management, acquire treasury shares or repay financial obligations towards owners or affiliated entities
  • As compensation for the guarantee, borrowers must pay an annual premium ranging from 0,25% – 2% of the outstanding principal amount (depending on size of enterprise and repayment term)

1.2 Possibility of moratorium on bank loans

  • Corporate and other entities and natural persons may apply for 12-month moratorium on bank loans (extended by banks with seat in Slovenia and Slovenian branches of EU banks)
  • Contractual interest continues to accrue during moratorium (but also suspended)
  • Several conditions apply – including (i) seat / permanent residence in Slovenia and Slovenian citizenship (in case of natural persons) and (ii) demonstrated threat to liquidity / solvency (conditions relaxed for corporates prohibited from carrying on business due to epidemic). Borrower is prevented from paying out dividends / management and employee bonuses / and intra-group loans
  • Republic of Slovenia to secure a total of EUR 200m in guarantees to banks for suspended portions of loans (specific conditions and limitations apply – eg. total 25% or 50% of suspended amount per single loan)
  • For more details on the measure and generally on lending in crisis, see here
  • 12-month moratorium also available to 'systemic companies and cooperatives in difficulty' (falling under the ambits of corresponding 2017 Governing Rescue and Restructuring Aid Act) – broadly similar principles apply as above

See our newsletter for an overview of directors' duties and options available to companies in times of financial uncertainty

1.3 Temporary suspension of dividends and certain other pay outs

  • Banks and savings banks with seat in Slovenia generally prohibited from paying out dividends and certain other pay outs (incl. variable compensation to staff whose professional activities have a material impact on risk profile). Prohibition generally applies for a period of one year (effective as of 09/04/2020 / extension and early revocation possible)

1.4 Other (selected) financial subsidies

  • 01/06 (UL 80): state support to SME in the form of refundable and non-refundable funds for specific purposes (securing continuity of business and liquidity / covering economic fallout in hospitality and tourism industries / for digital transformation etc.). Detailed requirements to be laid out by the program of financial incentives COVID-19 prepared by the Ministry of government
  • 01/06: EUR 10 million extended to SID Bank for the purposes of financing businesses in the road transport industry

2 Capital Markets

n/a

3 Employment

3.1 Subsidies available to employers between 01/06/2020 and 31/12/2020

  • 01/06 (UL 80): two alternative mechanisms available to employers: (i) fiscal reimbursement of salary compensation paid to workers waiting for work at home (applicable between 01/06/2020 and 30/06/2020); OR (ii) state subsidy for part-time work (applicable between 01/06/2020 and 31/12/2020)
  • Re fiscal reimbursement: employers are entitled to fiscal reimbursement of 80% of amounts paid to / for the employees (i.e. for salary and all social security contributions), but capped at EUR 892.50 per employee. Partial fiscal reimbursement for salaries of employees available to employers who anticipate 10% drop in revenue in 2020 compared to 2019. Satisfaction of conditions subject to review at end of fiscal year (if not satisfied - return obligation)
  • Re part-time work: subsidies available to employers who estimate they will not be able to provide 90% of work to at least 10% of employees working full-time, and will instruct employees to partially work (i.e. part-time work), partially wait for work at home. Amount of subsidy varies from EUR 488 to EUR 112 per employee, depending on working hours of the employee. Ban on employers who apply for subsidy to pay out dividends / management bonuses / purchase own shares in 2020 – or else must return received subsidies in full amount plus default interest
  • For completeness – employers that (A) had ordered their employees to wait for work at home or (B) had employees who were unable to work due to vis major in the period from 13 March 2020 to 31 May 2020 may (still) apply until 30 June 2020 for full fiscal salary reimbursement and other benefits (corresponding to the foregoing period) pursuant to the previous anti-corona relief package

4 Real Estate

4.1 Shops & restaurants, retail and other

  • 01/06 (UL 78): temporary restrictions / lockdown generally lifted on all retail services (including hotels and wellness centres) except night clubs / discotheques. Provision of services allowed on the condition of minimum contact with the consumers and in line with guidelines of (and in compliance with other safety recommendations adopted by) the NIJZ and the Ministry of Health (see section 8.1 below)

4.2 Construction

  • 01/05: Various simplifications in the permitting process (eg. reduced scope of documents for construction permit application / restricted criteria for NGO participation) (NB: intended to apply until 31/12/2021)
  • 01/06 (UL 80): A special law adopted to promote implementation of key infrastructure investments. These will be determined by the government on the basis of statutory criteria (eg. value exceeding EUR 5 million / specific strategy areas such as energy, infrastructure etc.). Key investments will enjoy priority treatment in admin and court proceedings. Additional requirements (eg. applicability of (i) local construction collective bargaining agreement for contractors and (ii) Guidance on the participation of third country bidders and goods in the EU procurement market

5 Corporate

see section 1 (Financial Support Measures).

6 Competition

01/06: Temporary measures lifted. See section 7 (Courts & Authorities), for procedural input

7 Courts & Authorities

  • 01/06: temporary measures in court, administrative and other public law matters under the Act on provisional measures for judicial, administrative and other public matters to cope with the spread of infectious disease SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) cease to apply as of 01/06/2020 (ie. where deadlines have been suspended they now continue to run / hearings can be held etc.)
  • 01/06 (UL 80): court holidays in 2020 limited to 01/08-15/08 (default regime 15/07-15/08)

8 Healthcare

24/06: trend of gradual relaxation of protective measures continues (eg. relaxation of limitations on engaging in sports and sporting events, on public transport, etc.)

8.1 National Institute for Health (NIJZ) recommendations

  • 01/06 (UL 79): mandatory NIJZ measures eg. include wearing of protective masks in certain areas (including closed public spaces where distance below 1.5 meter / in public transport / for persons with respiratory diseases / for workers in health institutions depending on the level of exposure etc.)

8.2 Healthcare services

  • 08/05: the general suspension on preventive and dental healthcare services lifted; nevertheless, special regime applies for scheduling / treating patients exhibiting symptoms of respiratory infections and those positive to COVID-19 infection

8.3 Medical equipment

  • Trade with protective medical equipment no longer subject to price ceiling / export authorization requirement

8.4 Restrictions on public gathering and movement

  • 15/06 (UL 85): Gathering and movement of people in public places generally allowed for up to 500 persons (on the condition of minimum contact between persons can be secured in line with guidelines / recommendations of the National Institute for Health (NIJZ)). Exceptions apply (eg. if other government decrees expressly prohibit specific public gatherings)

8.5 Air traffic

  • 12/05 (UL 66): General suspension of air traffic has been lifted (restriction remains applicable for inbound flights to smaller, local airports, until 12/06)

8.6 Border control / travel restrictions

  • 15/06 (UL 86): borders now generally open with all neighboring countries (subject to below conditions) – Croatia (all checkpoints), Italy, Austria, Hungary (limited checkpoints); all also on NIJZ "green list"  
  • 07/06 (UL 85): Limited border crossings are open for transit. Restrictions apply for non-essential travel. Travelers will as a general rule be placed under 14-day quarantine upon entry to Slovenia (subject to  exceptions – eg. no quarantine Slovenian nationals / foreigners with residence in Slovenia, passengers in transit, etc); applicability of quarantine also determined by country of origin – NIJZ keeps a "green list" / "red list" of epidemiologically safe / risky countries

8.7 Possibility of limitations on trade in the foodstuffs, farming and forestry sectors

  • 29/03 (UL 36/20): Legislative basis for imposing limitations on trade with foodstuffs (eg. import / export restrictions, maximum price setting) if there is shortage of supply due to epidemic. Similar measures for certain other products (eg. forestry products, cattle, seeds, phytopharmaceuticals) (NB: applicable until further notice but hard stop 01/09)

9 Insolvency

9.1 State guarantee scheme for certain bank loans to business

  • 01/05: the Republic of Slovenia launched a EUR 2 billion liquidity scheme, by granting statutory state guarantee as security for obligations arising out of certain loans / credit facilities granted by domestic banks to certain business-sector borrowers – see section 1 (Financial Support Measures) for details

9.2 Additional insolvency criteria

  • Debtor now also deemed (irrefutably) insolvent in case of a 1 month default on payment of wages and social contributions funded via state support (NB: the presumption stays in effect four months after state of epidemics has been withdrawn)

9.3 Suspended obligation to file for insolvency

  • (Adjustments 01/05): If insolvency is due to COVID-19 epidemic, deadlines for filing for insolvency will be suspended for the duration of COVID-19 epidemic and will expire within a further 3 months after anti-COVID measures cease to apply (01/05: unless where no prospects of recovery / remedying insolvency)

9.4 Employee claims

  • Employees may enjoy benefits under state guarantee fund already upon debtor's filing for insolvency (default rule requires that decision on opening of bankruptcy must become final – now impossible given suspension) (NB: the presumption stays in effect one month after state of epidemics has been withdrawn)

10 Insurance

10.1 Deferred 2019 annual report publication deadline

  • Must be submitted by 31/05/2020 (default regime: by end of April every year)

11 Intellectual Property

01/06 (UL 80): Temporary measures lifted. See section 7 (Courts & Authorities), for procedural input

12 Telecom & Data Protection

n/a 

13 Other

13.1 Environmental reporting

  • Deadlines for various reporting obligations extended to expire 60 days after epidemic declared over

13.2 More flexibility on KYC procedure

  • Extended deadlines for certain actors in financial and insurance markets for KYC checks (eg. KYC check can be performed 1 month after state of epidemics has been withdrawn)

13.3 Flexible payment terms for dealings with public sector

  • Payment deadline for claims of certain public authorities towards private sector payment deadlines increased to 60 days (whereby such deadline will remain applicable for one year after withdrawal / revocation of the state of epidemics)

13.4 Tourism

  • 01/06 (UL 80): tourist vouchers in the amount of EUR 200 / EUR 50 for adult / minor citizens with permanent residence in Slovenia as of 13 March 2020. Vouchers are transferrable within inner family (up to grandparents / grandchildren level) and can be redeemed for accommodation in hotels, apartment complexes, agritourism farms and similar facilities in Slovenia. Vouchers must be redeemed by 31 December 2020

13.5 Sport events

  • 01/06 (UL 80): for frustrated sport events, organizers may – in lieu of refund - offer consumers vouchers in equivalent amount that can be redeemed within 24 months

13.6 Promotion of investments

  • 01/06 (UL 80): relaxed criteria for awarding state support under the Investment Promotion Act (eg. reduced investment value / reduced number of newly created jobs)

 

Kindly note that the summaries on this page are for information purposes only and do not take into account the specifics of a certain situation. The information is not designed to substitute and cannot substitute legal advice tailored to your needs. It is made available strictly on a non-reliance basis. Also, some of the addressed topics might be subject to short-term changes. 
 

This article is part of our coronavirus-focused legal updates – visit our coronavirus infocorner to get more info!

Marko Frantar

Attorney at Law in cooperation with Schoenherr

T: +386 1 200 09 62
m.frantar@schoenherr.eu

Linkedin

Jan Primožič

Associate

T: +386 1 200 09 76
j.primozic@schoenherr.eu

country:

slovenia