Yesterday, the Slovenian National Assembly’s Committee on Foreign Affairs approved (here) an initiative submitted by the government to sign the Protocol on Privileges and Immunities of the Unified Patent Court (UPC). The proposal, originating from the Ministry of Justice and approved by the cabinet on 8 June 2017, highlights the importance of signing the Protocol as Slovenia will be hosting one of the seats of the UPC Mediation and Arbitration Centre in Ljubljana (the other one to be in Lisbon), and is planning to establish a Slovenian local division of the UPC. This announcement that Slovenia will be hosting its own local division puts an end to speculation on its participation in a regional division with other Member States. (A government report dated 20 March 2017 noted Slovenia’s initial intention to join other countries such as Austria, Croatia or Hungary to establish a regional division in Ljubljana. Austria has announced its intention to establish its own local division, whereas Croatia has not yet taken any steps to join the system. According to the document, informal contacts took place with Hungarian representatives but no agreement could be reached on the location of the regional division’s seat.)

As reported here, the National Assembly has passed legislation enabling the government to ratify the UPC Agreement, although Slovenia’s instrument of ratification does not seem to have been deposited with the General Secretariat of the EU Council yet. Slovenia was also one of the original signatories of the Protocol on Provisional Application of the UPC Agreement in 2015.