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Minister: Today's signing was the implementation of an agreement between Ljubljana and the government

The government, the city of Ljubljana and several companies signed today a EUR 300m investment deal for the development of the capital's shopping district BTC. According to the partners, the investments will create up to 2,000 jobs and contribute some EUR 30m to the state budget a year.

 

 

Infrastructure Minister Peter Gašperšič, who signed the agreement on behalf of the government, explained today's signing was the implementation of an agreement Ljubljana and the government reached last year, during the government visit to the capital.

 

He stressed that the government understood the importance of these investments for the development of the capital, its economy and job creation, as well as the BTC itself.

 

"Details about the value of individual investments will be hammered out down the road, but we can be happy that these investments will happen and back the planned development of the BTC as early as the end of this year, the next year and in 2019."

 

Chairman of shopping district operator BTC Jože Mermal added that this was an "exceptional day with regard to constructive dialogue and cooperation" between the state, the city and companies. According to him, investment will be carried out by the BTC and several other companies, including Swedish giant Ikea, retailer Mercator and Slovenian railroads operator Slovenske železnice.

 

Mermal, who added that more than EUR 400m had been invested in the BTC over the past 20 years, is certain everybody will benefit from the investment.

 

Apart from expanding one of the vital roads towards Šentjakob, Domžale, Litija, Zagorje and Trbovlje, up to 2,000 jobs will be created, "which is very important from the social aspect as well as from the aspect of the state budget, which will receive an additional EUR 30m per year in taxes and levies". He added that Ljubljana would have 170,000 square metres of logistics surfaces in the coming years, which will make it one of the biggest land terminals in SE Europe.

 

Mayor of Ljubljana Zoran Janković meanwhile praised the BTC, which attracts 21 million visitors a year. "In Dubai they're boasting a centre that attracts 60 million visitors, and we have a centre with 21 million in Ljubljana. We'll get to 30 million once Ikea opens."

 

The deal was also signed by the Infrastructure Agency and the Slovenian motorway operator DARS.