Slovenia refuses to rule out EU treaty change

“By joining the non-paper, we only wanted to send a message that all proposals that focus on improving individual policies should be considered. This is the position that Slovenia has advocated throughout this time,” Foreign Ministry State Secretary Gašper Dovžan said on Monday (9 May). [EPA-EFE/OLIVIER HOSLET]

Slovenia said it does not oppose the changes to EU treaties required by some proposals made through the Conference on the Future of Europe, even though it signed a non-paper that opposes “premature attempts” to launch changes to the bloc’s treaties.

Unofficial sources indicate Slovenia does not oppose treaty change but is not in favour of other proposals the conference put forward, such as transnational lists at EU elections.

“By joining the non-paper, we only wanted to send a message that all proposals that focus on improving individual policies should be considered. This is the position that Slovenia has advocated throughout this time,” Foreign Ministry State Secretary Gašper Dovžan said on Monday (9 May).

Dovžan said Slovenia was not avoiding responsibility and discussion on possible treaty changes but that past experience showed this required “sincere dialogue.”

“It is important that discussion involves all member states because there will be no changes to the fundamental treaties if not all member states and, somewhere also voters, agree with them,” Dovžan added.

He said that Slovenia had never rejected the possibility of a transition from consensus to the qualified majority. “We have, however, always noted that there are also intermediate routes.”

The statement came after President Borut Pahor surprisingly voiced support for treaty change in a rare instance of foreign-policy collision with the government.

“I support the call on the convention for the revision of treaties that the European Parliament calls for. My personal wish is that it would be one of the gradual steps towards the United States of Europe,” Pahor said on Twitter.

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