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Slovenian PM designate scrambles to form cabinet

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Slovenia's prime minister designate scrambled Thursday to find ministers for her new centre-left government, in particular to run the troubled eurozone member's finances, as commentators warned that the crisis was far from over.

Alenka Bratusek announced late Wednesday the signing of a coalition agreement two weeks after the centre-right premier Janez Jansa was ousted in a confidence vote following weeks of protests and political turmoil.

Bratusek, who only became an MP in 2012 and head of the Positive Slovenia party earlier this year, is due to present her four-party coalition's proposed cabinet later on Thursday.

Media reports said however that the 42-year-old was having problems finding a finance minister, a job that is particularly vital since Slovenia's banks are in such a dire state that the country may need a bailout.

Bratusek said Wednesday that the "political crisis... (is) obviously over" but commentators on Thursday voiced fears that her declaration may be premature, with the weekly Demokracija calling the new coalition a "recipe for disaster".

The deputy president of one of her new coalition partners, the Civil List (DL), former finance minister Janez Sustersic, resigned on Wednesday in protest at what he predicted would be a softening of austerity measures.

"This government does not have a clear economic policy," Sustersic was quoted as saying by the Dnevnik newspaper. "I'm afraid Slovenia might soon need to ask for international financial help."

bk/stu/txw

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130314/slovenian-pm-designate-scrambles-form-cabinet