The Government and Politics of the European Union

Seventh edition

by Neill Nugent


Population 2.0 m
Capital Ljubljana
Surface area 20,100 km2
Official Language Slovene
Gross domestic product (GDP) (in euros) 42.6 bn
GDP as a % of EU-27, based on 2009 data 0.4
GDP per capita by purchasing power standards (indexed to EU average of 100) 90.7
Currency Euro
Human development index (HDI), an index based on life expectancy, education and GDP (max. 1) 0.917
World rank in HDI 27/177
Key economic sectors (% of GDP in 2002) Services (65.8); industry (31.9); agriculture (2.3)
Unemployment in January 2010 6.8% (source:
Main religious denominations Roman Catholic (57.8% of the population according to the 2002 census)
Political system A directly elected President selects his own prime minister and Council of Ministers. Legislative power is vested in a bicameral parliament, consisting of a National Assembly elected for four-year terms and an advisory State Council, elected for five-year terms and with the power of veto.
Electoral system The National Assembly is elected by proportional representation. The State Council is chosen by panels representing the regions and various interest groups.
Current (March 2010) leaders President: Danilo Türk (b. 1952), since December 2007
Prime minister: Borut Pohur (b. 1963), since November 2008
Previous leaders: Presidents: Janez Drnovsek (2002-08); Milan Kucan (1990-2002)
Prime ministers: Janez Jansa (2004-08); Anton Rop (2002-04)
Joined the EU/EC 2004
Commissioner from country in Barroso II College of Commissioners, and portfolio Janez Potocnik (Environment)
Number of MEPs 8/754
Turnout in 2009 EP elections (%) 28.3
Member of eurozone Yes (since 1 January 2007)

Except where a specific reference is inserted, the sources for this profile are either Neill Nugent’s book itself, or Barry Turner (ed.), The Statesman’s Yearbook Online, Basingstoke and New York: Palgrave Macmillan. If your library subscribes, you can gain access at