EU Commission's Juncker, Bulgarian President Discuss Possibilities for Economic Growth

Politics | February 26, 2015, Thursday // 17:25|  views

Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev (L) and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (R) hold a joint news conference. Photo:EPA/BGNES

The situation in Bulgaria is not easy, because of the lack of economic growth. The average values have improved as compared to the previous year, but nonetheless Bulgaria is among the list of member states with lowest public debt.

That was the statement of European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker at a joint press conference, following a meeting with Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev in Brussels on Thursday.

Among the topics discussed at their meeting was the question of whether the investment plan of the Commission can be adapted for Bulgaria.

Junker further announced that he anticipates that the EU Cooperation and Verification Mechanism (CVM) will be ended in a few years.

Plevneliev, on the other hand, has acquainted the EU Commission President with the political realities in Bulgaria after the two years of protests and preliminary elections, stating that the country is now with a clear ambition for reforms.

He further assured Juncker that 2015 will be the year of stability for Bulgaria and that the hope is that it will become a Shengen member state soon.

Both shook hands in support of the idea for Energy Union presented on Wednesday.  

Asked whether he is concerened about the economic stability of Bulgaria, since the BGN 16 B debt was ratified in Parliament yesterday, Jucker stated that the government will need to take into consideration a number of factors for it to work.

Juncker added that there currently are 16 countries affected by economic disbalance in the EU, and that the energy hub to be built in Bulgaria will improve the situation.

President Plevneliev, on the other hand, stated that energy diversification should be a priority for Bulgaria and that the Energy Union will definitely make a difference for Southeastern Europe.

Asked whether today the country is better prepared for a gas crisis than in 2008, he answered that Bulgaria managed well back then even though the situation happened in the winter.

The stopped gas supplies were on acocunt of the dispute between Russia and Ukraine over delayed payments.

Plevneliev added the pipeline connecting Bulgaria and Greece is now operating in both directions and that there still is the gas reserve in Chiren, able to supply enough gas for three months.

Both representatives agreed on the proposal for the gas connection with Romania should be launched as soon as possible.

Juncker himself stated that he will visit Sofia in the upcoming months. 

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Tags: CVM, energy union, European Commission, Jean Claude Juncker, Rosen Plevneliev, gas crisis, Russia, Ukraine, Chiren


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