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Germany and Slovenia: Bilateral relations

08.07.2022 - Article

Diplomatic relations between Germany and Slovenia were established on 15 January 1992. The two countries enjoy very good relations based on mutual trust. The new Slovene Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon met Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock on 1 July 2022 during her first official visit to Berlin. The two Foreign Ministers signed a joint action plan to intensify bilateral cooperation in the period from 2022 to 2024. On 28 April 2022, Slovenian President Borut Pahor travelled to Berlin to hold talks with Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Slovenia held the Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2021 and was thus, together with Germany and Portugal, part of the Trio Presidency from July 2020. Numerous high-level politicians visited Slovenia as part of its Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

Bilateral economic cooperation is extremely close. Germany is Slovenia’s most important trading partner by far, accounting for 19 percent of the country’s foreign trade. It is also one of the principal foreign investors in Slovenia. The German-Slovene Chamber of Industry and Commerce celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2016.

A cultural agreement between Germany and Slovenia has been in force since 1993. The most recent consultations took place in Ljubljana in May 2002.

With its politically ambitious programme work and successful language courses, the Goethe-Institut, which opened in the country in 2004, is an important cultural stakeholder. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has a lector in the country.

At 23 of the country’s schools, students can obtain the German Language Certificate (DSD) of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs. They are supported by an advisor from the Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA) and a number of seconded teachers as well as by volunteers from the “kulturweit” programme. There is also a FIT school in Slovenia – Beltinci Primary School, which is likewise part of the Schools: Partners for the Future (PASCH) network. A total of some 70,000 pupils are learning German. German is the most frequently taught language after English. However, it has been in decline since pupils are now only required to learn only one foreign language at school.

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