Skip to content .

Service navigation

Main Navigation


Further information

Link to opens in a new window


Press Releases


Prime Minister Janez Janša at the eurozone accession event in Malta

Prime Ministers of the Republic of Slovenia and Malta, Janez Janša and Lawrenc Gonzi ((photo: Kristina Kosec/Bobo)

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia and current President of the European Council, Mr Janez Janša, was today on a one-day visit to Valletta at the invitation of the Maltese Prime Minister, Mr Lawrence Gonzi, where he was attending the official ceremony on the occasion of  Malta’s entry into the eurozone.

The Slovenian Prime Minister was one of the keynote speakers at the main evening ceremony, which was also attended by many other prime ministers, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso, European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet, the finance ministers of several countries and other distinguished guests.Mr Janša congratulated the Maltese people, stating that he appreciated and understood their feelings at this historic moment, since it was only a year ago that Slovenia had introduced the euro and thus said a final farewell to the Slovenian tolar.He considered the introduction of the single European currency an important step forward in the process of European integration."If Portugal concluded its Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the finest way by extending the Schengen border to Malta, Slovenia and other new Member States of the European Union, Slovenia is beginning its EU Council Presidency in the finest way by welcoming Malta and Cyprus into the European Monetary Union," he affirmed.The Prime Minister expressed his hope that the number of eurozone countries would increase further in 2009, bringing a more stable economic environment and advancing the prosperity of all citizens of Europe.

On this occasion, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia and current President of the European Council, Janez Janša, offered the Maltese Prime Minister, Lawrence Gonzi, a symbolic token in the shape of a Slovenian euro coin bearing the image of the greatest Slovenian poet, France Prešeren.

Prior to the ceremony, the Slovenian Prime Minister, Mr Janša, accompanied by the Slovenian Finance Minister, Dr Andrej Bajuk, had a meeting with their host, the Prime Minister of the Republic of Malta, Mr Lawrence Gonzi. Discussions focused on their experience of introducing the euro.Mr Janša took the opportunity to congratulate his Maltese colleague on this major achievement, adding that he was well aware of how much work and effort had been required to fulfil the stringent Maastricht criteria for accession into monetary union.The fact that some of the EU’s new Member States had adopted the single European currency was also proof that the eurozone is not some kind of private or exclusive club.According to Mr Janša, outside the EU the euro is seen as a trademark symbol of the European Union, a brand which since 1999 has played a part in creating millions of new jobs in the European Union.

Family photo (photo: Kristina Kosec/Bobo)The two Prime Ministers further discussed the priorities of Slovenia's Presidency of the Council of the European Union, a task which represented not only a great challenge but also a great responsibility for Slovenia.Among the priorities, Mr Janša highlighted in particular the Western Balkans and the situation in Kosovo.The Maltese Prime Minister acquainted Prime Minister Janša with the problems of illegal migration which Malta was facing on a daily basis.Mr Janša emphasised that illegal migration could not be a problem of concern only to Malta, Spain and certain other Mediterranean countries but that it was a pressing issue for the European Union as a whole.He added that Slovenia would make every effort in future to raise awareness on the need for solidarity in this area.

The two Prime Ministers assessed the cooperation between their respective countries as excellent, with no outstanding issues between them that needed to be resolved.They added, however, that there were further options open to both countries to step up cooperation in the economic field.  In this context, the plans to improve cooperation between the Slovenian port of Koper and the Maltese port of Marsaxlok are very encouraging.  

At the end of the meeting, Prime Minister Janša added that the adoption of the euro had contributed only slightly to inflation in Slovenia, by something in the range of 0.3 to 0.6% according to some estimates.A higher rate of increase can be attributed to increased food and oil prices.Prime Minister Janša advised his Maltese counterpart to maintain the dual display of prices as long as possible, because it enabled consumers to compare prices.

Accessibility     . Print     .

Date: 13.01.2008