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Minister Outlines New Industrial Policy

Portoroz, 30 September (STA) - Economy Minister Darja Radic presented the outlines of a new national industrial policy Thursday, saying that sectors which are already successful would be promoted, a concept she called $smart specialisation$.

"We can only achieve a breakthrough with companies and groups of companies which already mean something," she said at a panel organised as part of the autumn meeting of Manager Association in Portoroz.

Providing a favourable competitive environment is a necessary precondition, but this is not enough to achieve a development breakthrough, she added.

The new industrial policy will be based on a tender, published in June, for development centres which identifies eight sectors.

These include automotive and electronics industries, energy, pharmacy and biotech, information and communication technologies, wood processing, logistics and new materials.

EUR 185m will be earmarked for such centres in the 2010-2015 period.

Companies willing to join such development centres can become hot spots for industrial policy in the next five years, Radic said.

The minister however acknowledged that opinions on industrial policy are divided. "Even I'm not personally convinced this is the right path. But I think this can represent a way forward given the available funds."

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