In its latest economic forecasts, released on November 5, the European Commission has significantly reduced the outlook for Slovenia, which is expected to be the slowest growing economy in the Union in 2015, reports Dnevnik. The Slovenian economy is expected to shrink by 2.7 per cent this year, and by 1 per cent in 2014, as Finance minister Uroš Čufer recently anticipated. Only Cyprus, which is facing forecasts of an 8.7 per cent contraction in GDP in 2013 and a 3.9 per cent contraction in 2015, is faring worse.

The reasons for Slovenia’s economy’s poor performance essentially lie with the country’s troubled banks, whose rescue, along with low export growth and low domestic consumption, will contribute to put pressure on the budget.

Notwithstanding the negative forecasts, the European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs, Olli Rehn, voiced support for Slovenia’s efforts and stated that Slovenia “will not need to apply for programme assistance.”

"The Union no longer has much faith in Croatia," headlines the Zagreb daily Jutarnji List, which [asserts] ( that “if one can believe the forecasts of the European Commission, by next year Croatia will leave the club of countries in recession." However, the newspaper continues, Croatia will have the lowest rate of growth in the EU, "a symbolic 0.5 percent."