The RETRACE Action Plan of the Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy of the Republic of Slovenia includes four actions which generally aim at addressing the identified policy gaps that prevent more systemic approach towards circular economy. It also seeks to contribute to improve the implementation of the Operational Programme for the Implementation of the EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020, Slovenian Smart Specialisation Strategy and Slovenian Development Strategy 2030.
ACTION 1 | BETTER ALIGNMENT OF LEGAL FRAMEWORK IN THE AREAS, RELATED TO THE WASTE AND BY-PRODUCTS TOPIC
Goal of this action is to bring together the stakeholders that usually do not cooperate easily. The idea is that with such a cooperation the mutual understanding of the problems would improve and would lead towards solution that would benefit all.
The collaboration was established between the GODC and few associations under the Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The member companies of one association had formed a list of waste that could be used as a potential input for other processes. For one type of waste some solutions have started to be sought. Another association prepared the questionnaire related to the construction and demolition waste and produced the list of the most interesting waste streams for the exchange. In addition, they have also organized a stakeholders meeting where representatives of different institutions and companies participated.
ACTION 2 | ESTABLISHMENT OF APPROPRIATE PRICE SIGNALS FOR THE TRANSITION TO CIRCULAR ECONOMY
The goal of this action was to stir the debate on the appropriate financial incentives to stimulate strengthening the use of secondary raw materials and thus improve the predictability for the companies on one hand and on the other hand to help to reduce or divert the waste from landfills.
In the framework of this action a meeting was organized among the representatives of Ministry of Finance and GODC, to present them the approach by the Scotland in terms of escalating the landfilling tax. The solution seemed to be interesting however due to the complexity of subject matter more effort will need to be put into implementing such or similar approach at the national level.
ACTION 3 | STRENGTHENING THE SUPPORT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGNING THE MEASURE FOR THE ENTERPRISES IN THE FIELD OF CIRCULAR ECONOMY
This action has two main elements to it. The first one was to improve the knowledge within the already existing support environment by preparing the training and educational package and share it with the regional stakeholders and representatives of the creative community. The second set of activities aimed at creating more targeted financial support for companies that intended to work towards the circular economy business models.
Like other actions also here, work is still in the progress. However, the package for education/information dissemination on circular economy was prepared in ppt format and the presentation was given at several events where the representatives from the business support environment from the regions were present. Altogether we estimate that over 70 people had chance to listen to the presentation. In some cases, more in-depth presentation together with the workshop was presented.
The concept of the green voucher was prepared jointly with the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology and it is anticipated that it will be launched in autumn 2019. Another important stakeholder - Strategic Research and Innovation Partnership – Circular Economy (SRIP CE) have conducted a survey among the companies on what kind of activities the companies are doing and what are their needs to support them on the journey towards circular business models. Results will be presented at the end of September and will be used for better aligning the future calls to support the business. SRIP CE is planning, together with another stakeholder – Center for Creativity to launch the hackathon where they will bring together the representatives of the business community and creative sector. Also at the beginning of the year, Centre for Creativity published a call Creative and Circular. Three best proposals were presented at the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Conference 2019 in Brussels and all projects submitted were exhibited publicly in the Museum for Architecture and Design.
ACTION 4 | LOW LEVEL OF KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING OF THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY PRINCIPLES AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN CENTRAL GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS
This action aims at enhancing the level of knowledge and expertise at various levels of public administration in the area of circular economy.
In this respect we established a link with the Administration Academy that organized an educational session for policy and decision-makers to familiarize themselves with the concept of circular economy. The event was attended by over 20 participants from various ministries or governmental offices.