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Slovenia Plans Wealth Fund to Streamline State-Asset Management

Slovenia plans to create a sovereign-wealth fund by merging agencies that are managing state assets to boost revenue from their investments.

“The aim is to streamline the management of state assets and make them more efficient,” Finance Minister Janez Sustersic told reporters in Ljubljana today. “We will later decide which are just portfolio investments, which are strategic and we want to keep and which companies will be sold.”

The fund will report to the lawmakers while profits will be used to finance pensions and the budget, Sustersic said. The plan is to merge five different agencies with total assets estimated at more than 10 billion euros ($12.54 billion), Finance newspaper reported yesterday.

Slovenia, the first post-communist nation to adopt the euro in 2007, wants to earn more from state-owned companies as it seeks to reduce budget spending and enact the so-called fiscal compact inspired by Germany.

Slovenia’s export-driven economy is in its second recession in three years and is forecast to shrink 2 percent this year, according to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development.

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