Political Programme of the Slovenian Democratic Party (SDS)Adopted by the 8th SDS Congress, 14 May 2005
1. The horizons of culture, society and the country of Slovenia are spreading wide. The future we have long been waiting for is here to take us forth. We have finally become the creators of our present and future time, both from the social and state-oriented point of view, creating our own nationally cultural and political civilization, finally getting the opportunity to actively participate in forming the economic, cultural and political image of Europe.
2. The Slovenian Democrats are fully aware of the European foundations, promoting the effects of culture and civilizations. The foundations lean on Judeo-Christian heritage, humanism and enlightenment. We understand the meaning of our ancestors' efforts, striving to create the sense of Slovenian national identity, preserving it through difficult times in history and society, knowing how to change it in such a way that a modern Slovenian country has eventually seen the light of day. We were given universal value of freedom, justice, solidarity and patriotism, the values which now prove to be the foundation of democracy, equality, human rights and the rule of law of the Slovenian country.
3. After much hardship in other countries, in which Slovenia was in minority, after experiencing the suffering of both World Wars, after tragically facing the effects of fratricide revolution and the traumatizing experience of losing human rights in the totalitarian regime, we have come together in faith to preserve the humane civilization of freedom, prosperity and solidarity of the people of autonomous Slovenia.
4. We shall carefully and thoughtfully preserve our cultural identity; by doing so, we shall actively participate in forming the European cultural and linguistic diversity. Proud of the national identity and history, we shall furthermore help to create conditions to ensure cultural identity of the Italian and Hungarian nationality, along with Romany community and others as well. We are fully determined and ready to overcome all the previous dividing barriers, and connect firmly to face the destiny ahead.
5. All of that can be achieved through responsible participation in managing and decision-making processes, regardless of whether or not we win the Party Election or being the opposing political party.
6. Slovenian identity in its civilization scope, along with its cultural and ethnic frame, has been formed throughout the centuries. This has been a process, heavily influenced by many cultural, social, historical and identifying milestones, as for example: Freising Manustripts, the first written documents on linguistic autochthonism, Carantania, peasant risings, the setting up of Slovenian literature by Primož Trubar, the complete translation of the Holy Bible by Jurij Dalmatin, setting up the poetry of France Prešeren in the spiritual, literary and linguistic framework of Europe, United Slovenia as the first national movement during the Spring of Nations, the efforts of Anton Martin Slomšek, setting up the diocesan church authority in Slovenia, the national revivalist movement, propagating the unity of Slovenians to be nationally established, the contribution of Rudolf Maister in preserving the North ethnic area, reintegrating Prekmurje, movement of the Slovenians of Primorska, particularly the Tiger to preserve Primorska as the autochthonous part of the Slovenian national territory, fighting the occupiers during World War 2 and fighting Fascism, Nazism and Communism, fighting the Yugoslav centralism, Number 57 of Nova Revija (The New Magazine) and the literary Thesis of Slovenian constitution, running the activities of the Human Rights Protection Committee and the events, related to the national Spring, guiding Slovenia to path of democracy and independence, which we physically secured through the war in 1991.
7. After gaining independence and introducing basic democratic structures and rule of law, Slovenia has not taken advantage of all development opportunities, because the ruling political parties, drawing the political powers from the previous regime, used transition processes for their own benefit even in the newly emerged system.
8. Our entrance in the Euro-Atlantic connections, particularly NATO and the EU, is additionally ensuring modernization and preservation of Slovenia. It has finally taken a new path as a democratic, independent, confident country, responsible for its own progress, leading to prosperity and peace.
9. In the history of Slovenian nation, there is powerful link of actions and processes, leading to the formation of the independent country. In the very core of this link lies consensus about the system of values, uniting all residents of Slovenia. Political unity in all historical decisions is a quality, reflecting maturity and ensuring sustainability of the Slovenian nation in the global society.
II. CORE VALUES10. Slovenia shares its values with the society of one and the same cultural and civilization circle of Europe and Western countries. Slovenian democrats therefore set these values as the example: freedom, human dignity, justice, solidarity, patriotism and environmental awareness.
11. Freedom, that is to say freedom of the individual – is the basic core value of our culture and civilization – it can only be limited by the same freedom of other people. The individual can be free, if he/she has a possibility to present himself/herself autonomously and if the country structures make it possible for him/her to establish and realize his/her legitimate interests and rights.
12. Human dignity means that every individual, regardless of his/her race, religion, gender, political and social environment or any other differences, has equal rights, freedoms, and responsibilities, along with honour and respect.
13. Justice means that every individual stands equal before the law and regulations and has equal starting opportunities to develop. The country is obliged to provide proper conditions to ensure justice.
14. The point of solidarity is that people, dependent on one another, accept mutual responsibility for each other and the society, both for current and future generations. The ethical standpoint of solidarity assumes that no one can be indifferent if people around him live in shortage and in straitened circumstances and are unable to help themselves.
15. Patriotism is devotion and loyalty to one's homeland, his/her culture and traditions and the language in particular; all is related to forming collective identity on the global level of national and cultural diversity. Patriotism is particularly important in preserving and developing smaller nations and cultures.
16. Environmental awareness and positive attitude towards the environment means we strive to reduce negative influence on the environment and the natural world in general. Improved attitude towards the environment is achieved through appropriate values and treatment, following environmentally friendly economy and technology and proper environmental and waste management.
17. All these values can be realized in appropriate democratic conditions. Democracy does not only mean the form of regime (elected by the majority), but also equal, tolerant dialogue based on rational arguments and protection of rights and interests of different minorities. The values must not only be discussed, they must be considered thoughtfully and applied accordingly. This best serves its purpose when a large circle of people is involved and when it is clearly reflected in all spheres of social life. The key characteristic of a democratic structure is that no political minority is permanently arranged as a minority and that no political group may permanently enjoy the majority position. In democracy, the power is restrained by laws, but true democracy also includes voluntary restraint of authority.
III. ESSENTIAL PROGRAMME OBJECTIVES AND DEVELOPMENT PARADIGM
18. Slovenian development challenge can only be realized if creative potential of the nation will be fully used and if every member of society can contribute according to his/her power and desire to do so. In order to achieve this, we need a structure that our ancestors called United Slovenia (Zedinjena Slovenija). This conception consists of the elements necessary to unite the nation with common progress, exceeding political, national and geographical boundaries. These elements include knowing our own origin, awareness, setting things right, reconciliation, admitting the past as our common inheritance, together with being aware of our future, further democratization and development.
19. The progress does not mean achieving static aims, because we shall constantly face new challenges in dynamic and variable areas, which are developing just as well. The progress cannot be narrowed down to one single notion, as for example the growth of GDP, that is to say the economy alone. The progress stretches to a measurable quantity part, i.e. the growth of GDP, the competitive position of Slovenia, inflation rate and outstanding amounts, and also to immeasurable quality part, such as the quality of life, expressed as integration and safety, culture, democracy level and solidarity within a society. The progress as seen by the Slovenian Democratic Party includes the following: human scope, involving the quality and length of life in general, individual's rights and responsibilities, active and free involvement in all major social subsystems, participating in creating and enjoying the material and spiritual wealth of the society; it includes the cultural domain , providing the individual and the society with the sense of affiliation and identity, core values and norms both in terms of Slovenian nation and wider scope of European and Western civilization; social scope, signifying the growing strength of mutual trust, cooperation and solidarity, demanding the equilibrium between the modern individualism and integration in the modern national and other communities; political scope, involving the constantly growing strength and deepening democracy on both the national and European trans-national level, respecting and protecting acquis communautaire, ensuring political efficiency and transparency; economy scope, ensured by a free market economy in well-managed legal frameworks along with ethic and social dimensions. The motive power can only be an unrestrained individual business incentive and increasing creation, extension and use of knowledge.
20. All the above mentioned scopes are strongly interrelated and also linked to one another by a cause-consequence effect, so the progress of either of them can contribute to the progress of all the others and vice versa.
21. Slovenian Democrats are well aware that seeming and actual contradictions will take place. The granularity will increase on the one hand, but on the other, the process of growing globalization will also set forth. For us, globalization presents a challenge and an opportunity rather than a threat. European integrations are somewhat a part of globalization processes, but also provide Slovenia with the opportunity to actively adapt and use them in favour of its own development. However, there are certain questions that can only be solved on a global level, i.e. environmental protection, sufficient and safe energy supply, wide circulation of nuclear weapon, modern electronic communication, demilitarization etc. The globalization process also breaks down linguistic barriers. Slovenian Democratic Party is fully in favour of linguistic diversity, that is to say multilingualism, the spread of language culture and promoting Slovenian language both at home and abroad.
22. The society development can not be left to spontaneously evolve; neither can it be planned in all details.
23. Modern societies, Slovenian and European, demand the economy in which everyone has a chance to succeed and also be aware of his/her own responsibility. Rules of the game must be perfectly clear, thorough and applicable to all. Modern economic culture presupposes that innovation, creativity, resourcefulness, diligence and risk are well awarded. The economy needs stability. Slovenian Democrats base their ideas on the principle that economy growth will be fast and sustainable, only if the labour market and capital market are freed from obstacles that hinder competitiveness. At the same time, certain factors promoting common productivity growth in the long run must also be ensured. Such a focused economic policy will bring Slovenia among the most developed European countries.
24. We believe there should be as little indirect state ownership as possible in the economy. In the areas, where the state has a certain control stake because of public interest, the policy of active ownership should be followed and the state should manage this with care and diligence. Both politics and economy are intertwined and this provides conditions creating clientelism and corruption, against which the Slovenian Democratic Party will fiercely and consistently fight. Slovenian Democratic Party trusts entrepreneurs and will do anything to give their creativity and market success full swing. We understand the liberalization in the economy as a method of preventing monopoly and intransparency, thus creating proper conditions for free entrepreneurship.
25. Slovenian Democratic Party especially supports the formation, existence and development of micro, small and middle-size companies. Ownership plurality and eliminating power centres, based on monopoly of ownerships and politics, are a must in order to develop and consolidate democratic relations in the society and make the individual feel truly free and happy. Slovenian Democrats perceive the increasing competitiveness in the economy also as a part of democratisation of our society.
26. Sustainable development does not only demand a healthy and successful economy. This is however a preliminary condition, but social, environmental, educational, cultural and security policy must all have a significant role. All these policies ensure development, coordinated regionally and space-wise. It will be the subject of a wide political and social consensus and will thus ensure the European quality of life for every individual regardless of where he or she will live and work.
27. Slovenian Democrats follow and upgrade everything positive in the notions of society development. Modern time challenges are all-embracing and require certain answers. On the programme level we offer answers through this particular political programme with which we try to set the grounds for general well-being of the country.
THE PROSPEROUS SOCIETY
28. With successful businesses Slovenian economy should provide prosperity and high standard of living to all the citizens according to their work, knowledge, creativity and entrepreneurship. By preserving and empowering its material substance it should be ensuring material and spiritual development for future generations as well. This is precisely the reason we strive to follow the intergeneration solidarity and intergeneration justice. It is not a good thing, if the burdens, caused by demographic changes, pass on to future active generations.
29. Slovenian Democrats strive after a just society, the foundation of which is a competitive economy, providing solidarity among the people, generations, regions and countries. We are all responsible for creating a prosperous society, being our primary objective. It can be created by forming partnerships between public and private spheres, through which we offer qualitative awards for the classic model of a social state.
30. Key criterion for a democratic and socially just society is the individual's dignity. In this sense and within the framework of the options given, Slovenian Democrats support protecting social rights, particularly of the groups that are socially disadvantaged or potentially at risk to become deprived. Through protection we will prevent increasing social differences and eliminate social exclusion and poverty. The things that matter are cooperation and both a democratic and responsible consultation of social partners on all the essential developmental questions.
31. Employment is the best way of achieving social security. That is why the unemployed should be encouraged to be more active in finding a job and employers should be more stimulated in recruiting new workers. Unemployment is the key reason for poverty and social isolation and it can only be reduced by faster economic growth and by raising productive employment.
32. An appropriate system of pay policy, formed on basis of social dialogue, ensures social peace, motivation, steady development, increased productivity and quality of life. What is also particularly important is a consistent and stimulating pay system in the public sector.
33. A system of pension insurance must be fair and thorough and sustainable in the long run. Liabilities should be more evenly distributed among generations. The system of compulsory pension insurance, based on »intergenerational treaty«, should ensure basic social security, providing a decent living; supplementary insurance should be ensured by unit trusts.
34. Despite following the principle of equal starting opportunities, in the conditions of social market economy certain individuals and groups are still pushed aside to the edge. In order to prevent social isolation and poverty, we need a comprehensive national system of social security with a common information system and a national database about social conditions and programmes. Development goals of our politics on social security are increased diversity of contractors and programmes, ensuring better quality (competitiveness and rationalization by providing concessions to private undertakings, disability and charity organizations and societies), decentralization of planning and organizing social-security activities and more active involvement and mainstreaming of non-governmental organizations.
35. Slovenian Democrats strive to achieve a more active policy in addressing the issue of disabled persons, particularly in the area of employment and rehabilitation.
36. Physically and mentally disabled and their caretakers must be treated with appropriate social consideration and security.
37. The regulations covering the area of war veterans, war disabled and war victims must not be discriminatory to any citizen.
38. Slovenian Democratic Party defends equal opportunities for health care. All social classes, regardless of their residence, must be provided with equal access to public health care services.
39. Health is a basic human right, but also the responsibility of every individual. Health policy must be action-driven so as to promote a healthy life-style, reduce harmful effects for the environment and ensure a healthy, quality living for all citizens. Anti-smoking, anti-alcoholism and drug-free programmes must be realized at an accelerated pace, and people should be encouraged to healthier nutrition and regular physical activity.
40. It is the obligation of the country to create conditions reducing the number of accidents and suicides, providing special health care for children, young people, women and older people and also providing protection of workers on site. Slovenia needs a thorough system of public health care with clearly set standards for workers, premises and the equipment, following the principles of modern medicine and financial capacities of the country.
41. Modern health system is based on independence and personal responsibility of the holders of health-care activity. The country should fully allow that less demanding forms of public health services are run by private undertakings holding concession, but only when this increases efficiency. Tougher legislation should ensure quality and availability of health services.
42. Slovenian Democrats are supportive of stimulative family and parenting policy, which should function as a comprehensive system of measures to promote, respect and value the parenthood and in the long run ensure higher natality rate and better demographic trends in Slovenia.
43. The family must primarily be the environment providing ceaseless growth for the individual, helping him gain positive experience and values, learn accepting responsibility for his actions and freedom. The individual will thereafter have a positive influence on the society development. Family must also be the union of equal and democratic relations among its members, where the benefits of children are the primary motive force. In order for the family to be a buffer of society conflicts, it must be offered help in ensuring autonomy, economic independence, privacy and security, which also means preventing abuse and domestic violence. It is the only way to develop a free, morally firm, critical and responsible individual, a mature personality, capable of creating a civil power with similar individuals and thus creating general rules of life in our society.
44. An apartment is a necessary living space, ensuring normal living standards for every individual. We support the solidarity aid to be given to all the people who were either temporarily or permanently unable at some point to provide housing for themselves (young families, big families, disabled persons, retired people, and people with low income)
45. Slovenian Democratic Party is supportive of free and voluntary integration and organization of the young in the society. The country must ensure systemic and material conditions for the young to be active and for their successful integration into all areas of our society.
46. Young people are interested in improving educational system on all levels and also for increased international comparability and mobility. On the national level, efforts of the young to achieve equal educational opportunities are very important. Education represents one of the key factors of successful integration.
47. The country must ensure proper employment conditions in order for the young people to get employed as soon as possible after the end of their studies.
48. Sport plays a major role in achieving better quality of healthy living. The purpose of competitive sports is accomplishing topmost results both on domestic and international level; but sports in general must be promoted in a modern society, i.e. sport lessons at school, sports societies, recreation, health care, preventive lessons and sports for disabled persons. Professional athletes and sportsmen must be provided with better work security and better social security standards.
49. Slovenian Democratic Party is in favour of balanced gender representation both in political and social sector.
50. Voluntary work is a founding stone of a civil society. This should be one of the key obligations of the society that should be taken for granted. It will draw attention and provide cooperation for the whole community, encourage the young to live proudly, provide gaining new skills and know-how and promote personal growth, independence and creativity. Voluntary work should be a complementary activity rather than a substitute to the efforts made by the workers who get paid for their job.
51. Slovenian Democrats understand national security in its widest sense; security of the country and its citizens is ensured on the level of society and individual in the sense of wealth and well-being, spiritual growth, providing security against domestic and foreign war and civilian threats, security against natural and other disasters, proper social security, successful economic results, financial stability on the state level, proportional levels of technological independence, health and clean environment, preserving and developing Slovenian language along with the national and cultural identity. 52. Freedom of the press and public voicing is a basic condition of democracy. The media is full of news, comments, different types of information, education and advertising, all making considerable impact upon general mentality and forming people's viewpoints and values as well.
53. Overcoming dependence of editor's media policy from the actual policy is a process, which largely influences the success of democracy in Slovenia. The independence of the means of communication, both political and financial, is the condition helping to realize the freedom of public information.
54. The concentration of ownership and media control means the concentration of influence and social power held by a few individuals; this altogether cannot be allowed and it is dangerous. The democratic society must be based on the diversity of ownership and autonomy of the means of communication. It is only when this is achieved that we can talk about an independent, ethical, professional and autonomous journalism.
55. The general objective of upbringing and education is integrated development of the individual, who, provided with equal opportunities, gains quality know-how, skills and competence to successfully function in the social environment. One of the main tasks of the school system is preserving and developing national cultural identity, which is also established through asserting the constantly changing curriculum.
56. Through its mechanisms, the state is setting grounds for effectiveness, equal accessibility, good relations and the quality of the Slovenian school. This will be achieved through offering diverse public schools and through competitiveness. Private sector needs to have a larger role in the future, if it wishes to keep and improve its reputation in the world. The state and local communities must encourage the diversity in the area of education and security, because this improves its quality.
57. Slovenian democrats support the idea of democratic co-forming of school policy. We believe that besides the expert public, the parents, trade unions and the founders should be equally integrated. It is of crucial importance that educational institutions enjoy the high rate of functional autonomy.
58. The objective of every knowledge-based society is that the pupils, students and participants of lifelong learning programmes gain the best education possible for themselves according to their capabilities. By doing so, they will ensure competitiveness in the labour market and employment. That is why it is particularly important for a school system to be responsive to the society's needs, particularly economic ones.
59. Slovenian higher education system must be based on openness, enterprising drive and excellence and thus obtain better quality, becoming internationally competitive. It must be open to new colleges, workers and better quality of studies and training services in general. The structure of graduates must increase the input of natural science and technical studies and thus approach highly developed EU countries, taking into consideration economy's needs.
60. Slovenia is to maintain active in creating high-quality, comparable and open secondary school space and higher education institution space in the EU and provide student and teacher exchange programmes and at least partial studies abroad.
61. We shall actively help to contribute forming a common scientific research space of the EU. We need to strive for better integration and cooperation of scientific research institutions, both within Slovenia and also in a broader sense, on the level of EU. Wide national and international cooperation promotes competitiveness in the area of research, education and science and transfers the results into industry. We shall coordinate national and European programmes, promote and encourage knowledge and research and mostly focus on ensuring mutual coordination between educational and scientific facilities, public institutions and economy in general.
62. Knowledge is becoming increasingly important for economic development. Being the most competitive manufacturer has less to do with the location of natural resources, but more with handling the technology required in introducing new inventions. We shall only be successful if we know how to connect the invention, product design, its production and sale and also servicing. We need to become recognizable in the branches that offer us comparative advantage over the others. Entrepreneurial environment must hence be adapted to such an extent to be fully competitive on the global level.
63. Slovenia needs to attain labour productivity on par with the most developed OECD states. For this purpose, Slovenian Democratic Party will further promote entrepreneurship and strive for eliminating the remnants of arbitrary bureaucracy, altogether smothering the creative incentive through control mechanisms, regulation, centralism and arbitrariness. Slovenia can thus finally pull itself away from the group of post-socialist countries and their hindering directions on innovations, productivity and development. For this purpose, we will attain the desired proportion of research and growth potential in economy, at the universities and the governing sector in highly developed EU member states.
64. In Slovenian economy we shall create the innovation atmosphere, promoting technological development through universities, institutes and other research and development organizations. It is precisely for this reason that all forms of state grants and incentives will need to be connected to the effects of technological development, economic growth and providing new, productive working posts, all based on the national development programme. The latter will contain explicit measures and criteria, known in advance, following international competitiveness standards, internationally comparable pay rate and increasing number of working posts. Furthermore, our labour market needs to be freed from obstacles preventing competitive performance of workforce.
65. Information society for all is the objective we shall obtain by building European information infrastructure together with the EU; and also build it in commercially less appealing areas, i.e., on the countryside. The use of information technology, increasing efficiency and consequently productivity is a basic condition for Slovenia to become more competitive in the global world together with other member states. Comprehensive state policy in the field of information and communication technology must follow the example of highly developed countries, following the legislation, action plans, research and development.
66. In order to obtain competitiveness of Slovenian economy, proper economic environment must be established, such that will provide maximum use of knowledge to innovate products and services. On the other hand, all of that must fully comply with sustainable development, preserving environment and following the most promising economic industries and technologies to strengthen the technology of renewable energy sources. Development and use of energy-saving technologies must also be supported.
67. We shall strive for Slovenian manufacturers to invest more knowledge and know-how into their products and gain success and international brand recognition, thus becoming the leading competence in the market niche they select.
68. Slovenian Democratic Party is happy to join all the European concepts, advocating education, sustainable development, quality employment, healthy environment and social cohesion. All represent the achievements of the European culture. We understand the cultural policy as establishing proper cultural environment, providing for knowledge-based economy. Culture in this particular sense is therefore not only a historical foundation of national identity and a modern, European, recognizable individuality of the Slovenian country within the cohesion of major and minor cultural identities, but also a foundation of economic wealth. In the sense of European spirit, the culture is of course primarily a free, creative and critical behaviour towards the world in general.
69. In Slovenian society, the culture has a special meaning, as it played a historical role in activating the national substance, which later on grew into a social and political movement to establish our own country. Our culture has significant guaranty in democratic, legal and social foundations, on which the Slovenian country was established. The culture is also credited with civilization power, setting basic values of freedom, justice, solidarity and patriotism.
70. Slovenian Democratic Party defined certain questions as a starting point of its activities. These questions address regulation of life, development and position of culture in the country. Art is, similarly to nature, a natural public good of the created environment, but also an indigenous and developmental social activity of an active environment. Concern for preservation of nature is not only a cultural, educational and scientific task of restricting human interference with nature. Nature protection in this sense is also trusting the nature in general and placing trust into its pre-cultural and post-cultural capacities.
71. Due to its meaning to civilization, the culture needs indirect public, governmental and furthermore political support, but the required assets must be to some extent contributed by certain independent bodies.
72. Slovenian culture functions in specific conditions, showing a relatively small cultural market and a limited language area. These circumstances call for urgent public, i.e. state support – mostly to art trades that have to do with the Slovenian language. What also needs to be provided is the expansion of private sector that still needs to handle its own market direction, but due to market specifics, it needs to be provided with financial stimulation or relieving tax legislation, whenever taking on important cultural and non-commercial programmes or projects. The agreement on the future cultural policy will thus mean dividing culture to public and private part and defining areas of public work, suitable for privatization. To what extent and scale should the high, vital, popular and alternative culture be supported is the subject of balancing the cultural policy that needs to be actively and ceaselessly carried out and also upgraded according to the growth and changing of culture at home and in the world, because the culture draws power from history and can thus be vitally preserved within a changing modern world.
73. Slovenian Democratic Party particularly emphasises the meaning of cultural synergy, education and science for preservation and universal development of Slovenia. It will therefore strictly follow this integrity and encourage investments in such areas.
EFFICIENT STATE MANAGEMENT
74. Slovenia's rule of law is not yet consolidated. Slovenian Democratic Party wishes for all the Slovenian citizens to feel legally safe and for the judicial system to function autonomously, efficiently and fairly.
75. Slovenia has become a relatively stable democratic country with established democratic institutions, based on the appropriate politically cultural setting. Despite of that, certain monopoly has emerged in media, capital and other businesses. They can altogether jeopardize the open and democratic Slovenian society.
76. State administration is considered to be an important factor in protecting human rights and freedoms, social development in general and particularly the competitiveness of the economy. It must be efficient, citizen-friendly and effective, as a high-quality servicing system for the citizens and the companies.
77. The tax system must be simple and create confidence in citizens for them to believe that a proper partnership between it and the state can be established. Raising taxes is not a punishment for the citizen; the taxes are the citizen's pay for quality state services. Not paying taxes hinders fast development. Good tax rates can only be achieved through economic growth and strong awareness that needs to be developed as a civil value.
78. Slovenian Democrats reject public borrowing to cover for current budget deficit and advocate a balanced, integrated and development-driven budget. Budgetary resources should be carefully and reasonably spent; before adopting new budgets, the analysis and adequacy assessment of actually spent funds should be prepared.
79. All the aspects of public finance will be carefully dealt with, particularly the general government expenditure. The number of parastatal funds and agencies must not exceed the required number; the transparency and controllability of financial flows within funds and state-owned companies must be ensured as well.
80. In the area of Personnel and Staffing we strive for bigger responsibility of public administration officials – there position must not have a better protection than the position of the employees in the companies. Public servants must be competent, innovative and creative, friendly with citizens and paid for performance, which should also be the promotion criterion.
81. According to the policy of polycentric development of Slovenia, we are fully in favour of decentralization and deconcentration of administrative tasks, coordinated with the regionalisation project of Slovenia, which shall improve the accessibility of state administration for citizens with wide system of administrative branch offices. The development must include the whole of Slovenia and ensure development opportunities even to remote municipalities, other settlements and villages.
82. Slovenian Democrats support a bigger role of municipalities, ensuring suitable conditions for their operation and setting up regions, onto which the state must transfer a part of its competence. Municipalities as well should transfer some of its competences only to ensure better efficiency and intelligence.
83. Key activities of the state in the area of ensuring internal security are performed by the police and certain other state institutions in relation to judiciary branch of power. We shall ensure conditions for successful and effective prevention of the most serious forms of crime and other criminal conduct, persecution and punishment of the most serious criminal offenders, ensuring general safety of people and property, ensuring better traffic safety and preventing illegal migrations.
84. Slovenian Democratic Party will strive for consensus to change the electoral system, which would provide for equal representation and indirect majority vote of voters.
SPACE MANAGEMENT AND ENVIRONMENTAL CARE
85. Space management requires sustainable and active care, decisive and systematic action, both for local as for global reasons. The space is one of the constituent elements of statehood, and its management has important effect on all other social areas. It hence needs to be interdisciplinary, professionally supported, universal and sustainable so it can ensure properly balanced development of Slovenian regions.
86. Due to extremely complex space conditions, particularly present in the modern Slovenia, hindering normal development of the country, in-depth care plan for spatial order is essential. Spatial problems have a strategic nature and need to be paid particular attention. Spatial policy does not only mean servicing of urbanization, it must also be specialized in providing biotic and cultural diversity of nature, seas, rivers, drinking water sources, farmlands, clean air, all of the natural and cultural heritage and facilitating tourist development in harmony with nature. The main objective of these interrelated efforts must be based on the concept of balanced and sustainable development.
87. The process of spatial planning must be carried out coherently on state, region and municipality level. The competences in the decision process regarding space must be distributed among the state, the region and the municipality according to the importance and meaning of the activities planned. The procedures of spatial planning activities and administrative authorization must be transparent, intelligible and mostly fair, short and effective.
88. Spatial planning must take into consideration all the efforts to achieve sustainable development; due to solidarity with future generations, we shall therefore base area management on both the economic and ethical grounds.
89. Slovenian Democrats aspire for high level of environmental protection and quality improvement. We base our attitude to environment on principles of precaution and prevention. Environmental damage is cheaper and easier to prevent than dealing with and treating its consequences.
90. Slovenia must preserve and take good care of its regional identity, settlement and regional characteristics and fully support continuing protection of protection zones – natural, regional and national parks.
91. Biological diversity is a particularly valuable form of natural wealth of Slovenia that needs to be preserved. Efforts in using renewable energy sources, efficient energy saving and promoting safe nuclear energy use are of crucial importance for a long-term development of Slovenia.
92. We support forms of spatial development that will only cause small dependence of particular areas from economic centres. Good infrastructure connections need to be ensured between the centres and other areas. Border regions and demographically endangered areas must be provided with additional payment facilities and relief policy and impetus for development. More than a half of Slovenian territory is considered to be endangered in terms of development, with less that one fifth of the whole population inhabiting such areas. The development strategy for Slovenia, national programme of rural development and measures to improve such conditions must therefore soon be adopted.
93. Slovenia is demographically endangered particularly in border and mountain zone; it is becoming an obsolete society with all the downstream consequences. It is therefore necessary for the state to prepare a holistic strategy which will bring about favourable socio-demographic trends. Economic growth is a precondition for such strategy, along with a more coherent economic and regional development.
94. Upgraded traffic policy in Slovenia must be systematically planned to coordinate the public traffic and transport with environmentally-friendly, sustainable and quality-driven methods. Development disparities in certain parts of Slovenia still do not provide for equal stages of development and road network coverage. We therefore strive to ensure suitable and balanced access to transport network.
95. After a 50-year deterioration of position in Slovenian agriculture, the reform followed the principle of multi-functionality, which, besides the food production, brings other benefits to the society, such as protecting the environment, cultural landscape and tradition. Agriculture should become competitive on the European level. A long-term solution cannot be offered by grants, but through cooperation and integration of the whole Slovenian food industry, along with focusing on the customer; it is the customer's demands which steer the production changes. Slovenian Democratic Party supports the development of Slovenian agriculture, the countryside and increased self-sustainability as a foundation of independence of Slovenian nation and Slovenian country.
96. Climate change represents one of the greatest and most complex threats to the human kind and the environment in general. They can influence all human activities and threaten not only the prosperity of the rich, but also the survival possibilities for the poor on the planet, good production, water access and the existence of animal species. Slovenian Democratic Party strives to achieve a global agreement to solve these global issues and to bring forth ambitious plans to reduce greenhouse gases, the action that will encourage and also force the entrance into a low-carbon society.
In Slovenia we advocate the policies that help us adapt to climate change, assume our own responsibilities from international agreements, use economic opportunities and last, but not least, change the values and people's attitudes.
97. Natural and other disasters, being the consequence of people's negligent attitude to the environment, are more frequent and increasingly intense. Regardless of the economic and general development they are actually becoming an increasing potential threat to national security. In case of relative sustainability in the future and the negative impact level and extensiveness, the threats of national security in a wider region may quickly take a different turn, also becoming military threats. Slovenian Democrats will reduce negative impact on the environment through reinforcing the economy with the highest added value possible, innovations, use renewable energy sources and thus decreasing negative impact and strengthen sustainable development. Slovenia must be equipped with comprehensive and coordinated action plans, which will successfully eliminate the consequences of such threats.
INTERNATIONAL AND EUROPEAN POLICY
98. By entering the EU and North-Atlantic Alliance two founding objectives of foreign policy were attained. Slovenian Democratic Party has been striving to achieve them since the beginning and international recognition of the Slovenian country. Economic, political and security position of Slovenian nation in the European and international community is the most solid in its history. By joining the EU many of the barriers, dividing Slovenian ethnic space, have been brought down. With the Schengen elimination of border controls the ties between the home country and Slovenian minorities abroad and around the world have been strengthened. In 2008 Slovenia did an excellent job running the EU. From the point of view of Slovenian national development, the mission thus accomplished cannot be compared to any other event in history, filling us with pride and belief that small nations can as well have an important and creative role in the EU.
99. Through Euro-Atlantic connections, Slovenia as a member assumed her share of responsibilities for developing democracy and freedom in the world. Slovenian Democratic Party will encourage all the efforts to strengthen the global role of the EU, actively seeking and co-designing solutions for major developmental dilemmas of the European integration process. All the member states and the world in general are interested in having a powerful and internationally influential European Union.
100. As a party, based on the rule of law principle, establishing democratic standards and market economy, the Slovenian Democratic Party supports the efforts of the United States of America to spread peace, well-being and democratic values in the world. Through the European People's Party, Slovenian Democratic Party will emphasize the advantages arising from strengthened cooperation in the transatlantic community and will thus constructively contribute to converge the positions on both sides of the Atlantic. It will support all institutional policies of EU, targeted to increasing the efforts of the democratization of states.
101. Slovenian Democratic Party will strive for consistent compliance with European standards when running a dialogue with neighbouring countries, linked to Slovenia through common history and powerful ties in the economic, cultural, scientific and political area. Slovenia needs a new joint political approval when the basic key points of foreign policy of Slovenia are involved. This is particularly present in finding optimal solutions in relations to neighbouring countries, where it must retain credibility in the eyes of international community. Slovenian minority groups abroad must keep the bridge to their neighbouring country and the Slovenian state is obliged and entitled to protect the interest of its minority groups with all international instruments, required for their protection.
102. Slovenia must actively support the efforts to accomplish the European perspective of states and help providing EU entrance for the countries of South-East Europe. United Europe must be based on overcoming historical differences and reaching consensus regarding the issues having to do with our common future.
103. Due to present and future threats of national security and the fact that Slovenia is a member of NATO and EU, we are well aware that our aim is to ensure our national security as a part of global security within the framework of both integrations. In order for Slovenia to use protective benefits of both integrations, Slovenia must, to the best of its abilities, also contribute appropriate share. Assurance for this is the Slovenian Army as a patriotic, highly motivated, professional, skilled and a truly well-equipped organization.