Slovenians have been tackling their first day at work with the euro, the currency introduced on 1 January. The outgoing national money the tolar will remain in use for two weeks. Market inspectors from Ljubljana have fanned out across the country, mainly checking that stores have enough coins and notes.
The head of one of the country’s leading commercial banks, Cvetka Selsek, assumed that there “will be difficulties over the next two weeks while payments are made in tolars and change is given in euros”, but said these would be solvable problems.
Becoming the euro zone’s 13th member is seen as a crowning achievement for Slovenia in its 15-year transition from a republic in socialist former Yugoslavia to the continent’s most advanced post-communist economy.
None of nine other countries that joined the European Union with Slovenia in 2004 are considered likely to be in a position to adopt the euro before 2009.