Slovenia seeks closer ties with France, Germany: PM
Slovenia wants to join France and Germany in leading the European Union out of crisis, Prime Minister Borut Pahor said late Monday.
"I believe the French-German axis will set the pace (for recovery) and my wish is for Slovenia to join them," Pahor said in an interview on national radio.
In order to do so, Slovenia would require "iron discipline to keep up with their pace of development" and would also need to "speed up reforms," Pahor said, as polls showed the popularity of his centre-right government at an all-time low mid-way through its term.
Slovenia intended to sign a "strategic partnership agreement" with France and also a "special declaration" on collaboration with Germany.
The premier said he hoped to sign the agreement -- which would cover closer collaboration with France in the economy, science, technology and other areas -- with French President Nicolas Sarkozy "in December."
After two years in power, Pahor's centre-right administration is deeply unpopular, with more than 77 percent of Slovenians seeing the government as unsuccessful and only 18 percent as successful, according to an opinion poll published by private POP TV over the weekend.
Slovenia, a former Yugoslav republic, declared independence in 1991, joined the European Union in 2004 and entered the eurozone in 2007.
© 2010 AFP