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Plans for Celebrating the Twentieth Anniversary of Slovenia's EU Membership

On May 1, 2024, Slovenia will mark the 20th anniversary of its accession to the European Union, coinciding with the largest EU enlargement in history. In collaboration with institutions such as the National Assembly, the Office of the President of the Republic, and the representations of the European Commission and the European Parliament in Slovenia, the government has curated a comprehensive program of activities.

Alongside other nations that joined the European Union on May 1, 2004, we will also commemorate this anniversary in Brussels. Information about events in Slovenia, Brussels, and beyond will be made available on the government's official website.

The peak of the celebration will unfold from late April to Europe Day on May 9, 2024. Young minds will engage in contemplating, creating, and discussing the anniversary through initiatives such as the "Europe in School" competition, the "European Village" project, and "Europe in Schools" visits conducted by the government as part of the active citizenship program.

On Europe Day, the celebration will be centered in Nova Gorica, where we commemorated our accession to the European Union and where the European Capital of Culture for the year 2025 will come to life. Festivities throughout the day and professional events will conclude in the evening with a national celebration in front of the Slovenian National Theatre in Nova Gorica.

Slovenia will be spotlighted in Brussels during the Bright Light Festival in February. The collective celebration of all ten nations that joined in 2004 will take place in early May during the EU Open Day.

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The twentieth anniversary provides an opportune moment for reflection on Slovenia's decision to become an EU member. The temporal distance now affords us an objective perspective and a sufficiently extended period for a serious analysis.

According to the latest Eurobarometer survey, Slovenes are conscious of the impact of EU membership on our lives and acknowledge the benefits derived from it. Membership has brought financial and developmental advantages, providing citizens with employment opportunities in other EU member states. Travel within the EU has been simplified, and the common currency, the euro, has facilitated business transactions and individual payments. EU membership not only brings numerous benefits but also entails responsibilities.

Alongside the other 26 member states, we must strive to maintain Europe as a cohesive entity with diverse traditions and languages, yet bound by common values such as democracy, freedom, and social justice. Our commitment to these values is demonstrated through participation in European elections.

This year, Slovenian voters will elect one additional Member of the European Parliament, bringing the total to nine, who will continue to collaborate at the European Parliament to make decisions that are beneficial for all European citizens.


Date: 9. January 2024

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