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Slovenia government survives confidence vote

LJUBLJANA, Slovenia (AP) — Slovenia's government has survived a confidence vote, boosting its efforts to avoid seeking an international bailout.

Following a 19-hour debate, lawmakers voted 50-31 early on Friday to back the government of Prime Minister Alenka Bratusek. The vote was tied to the 2014 budget, which was sharply criticized by the opposition.

The center-left government plans higher taxes, spending cuts and privatization in the hope of avoiding a bailout. The 2014 budget includes higher taxes on property. The biggest challenge for Slovenia will be the results of a stress test for bad bank loans, which are expected in mid-December. Slovenia has allocated 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion) to support the banks, but analysts have warned the costs could be much higher.

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