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Trade Secrets Act adopted by the National Assembly

In its regular session the Slovenian National Assembly adopted the Trade Secrets Act, which transposes into Slovenian law Directive (EU) 2016/943 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 8 June 2016 on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use and disclosure. The Act provides comprehensive regulation of trade secrets, defining the actual concept of trade secrets and laying down the procedures in the courts and measures in the event of violations. 

The Act provides a new definition of the concept of trade secrets, for which the basic definition had previously been provided in the act governing commercial companies, and owing to its broad definition it was frequently subject to interpretation in court proceedings. In line with the new provisions, trade secrets cover undisclosed expert knowledge, experience or business information that is not generally known or easily accessible, that has a certain market value and for which the person in possession of the trade secret has taken sufficient measures to keep it as a trade secret. 

A section of the Act is devoted to laying down the rules on legal remedies in civil proceedings against unlawful appropriation, the use and disclosure of trade secrets and rules on maintaining the confidentiality of trade secrets in and after court proceedings. Given the need for rapid action to avert a threatened danger, the Act also provides provisional regulations for the immediate cessation of violations, and there is also provision for the right to compensation for damages.  

Furthermore the Act defines exceptions where legal safety is denied to the holder of trade secrets in order to protect another justified interest, or where there is a need to ensure priority for certain other benefits, where disclosure protects the public interest or for instance the rights of workers. In such cases the courts will reject the request of the holder of trade secrets.

The aim of the Act is by improving the effectiveness of the legal safety of trade secrets against unlawful appropriation, use and disclosure, to protect the knowledge, experience and business information of companies and in this way to increase their efficiency and competitiveness.