Slovenia joined the Eurozone on January 1, 2007. In such a short time they already built a small collection of collectors coins, with face value ranging from 3 to 100 euro. Although they are all legal tender in Slovenia, these coins are not really intended to be used as means of payment, so generally they do not circulate (the only exception is the 3 euro coins which can be found in circulation although very, very rarely).
The first stage of the selection process started in April 2004, involving preliminary discussions with numismatists, designers and experts. The general public was also invited through the mass media to participate in a public tender concerning proposals of motifs (132 tenderers proposed 699 motifs). A special expert commission (9 different individual experts and members of different institutions, including the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Slovenia) dealt with the proposals and the process. The second stage of selection started when the Government of the Republic of Slovenia confirmed the commission's decision that invitations would be addressed to some prominent designers for the production of designs.
The commission invited five well-known Slovene designers. A special jury of reputable Slovene artists, designers, professors and connoisseurs of Slovene cultural heritage was appointed to review and assess the designs submitted for the Slovene euro coins. The commission of the Bank of Slovenia and Ministry of Finance unanimously agreed with the proposed selected designs prepared by Mr Miljenko Licul, along with Ms Maja Licul and Mr Janez Boljka. The Government of the Republic of Slovenia gave their consent and adopted the decision on 28 July 2005 to submit the selected design proposals for the national side of the Slovene euro coins to ECOFIN (Economic and Financial Committee) - Coins Sub-Committee, which acknowledged the compliance of the Slovene design proposals with European legislation on 5 October 2005.
The use of the "Prince's Stone ("Slovene: Knežji kamen, "German: Fürstenstein) on the 2-cent coin caused a minor political stir in the "Austrian State of Carinthia. The stone, a fragment of an ancient Roman column from nearby "Virunum that was used in the ritual of installing the princes of "Carantania and later of the "Duchy of Carinthia, is kept in a museum in "Klagenfurt (Slovene: Celovec), the Carinthian capital, where it is also considered a historical icon of the state. The Carinthian state government (headed by governor "Jörg Haider) issued a resolution of protest on 25 October 2005, which was rejected as "not to be taken seriously" by the then Slovenian foreign minister, "Dimitrij Rupel. However, there were also objections against its use on the Slovene side. On academic grounds, for instance, "Peter Štih, professor of history at the Ljubljana University and member of the Slovene Academy of Sciences, argued that the Prince's Stone cannot be considered a Slovenian but rather a Carinthian historic symbol.["citation needed]
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