World Bank to Help Bulgaria Improve Absorption of EU FundsBulgaria in EU | September 1, 2015, Tuesday // 18:26| views
Bulgaria’s Deputy PM Tomislav Donchev (R) and World Bank Vice President for Europe and Central Asia Cyril Muller (L) sign a MoU for consultancy services on absorption of EU funds, Sofia, Sept 1, 2015. Photo BGNES
The World Bank will assist Bulgaria in boosting the impact of EU funds on the country’s economy under a new document signed on Tuesday.
Bulgaria’s Deputy Prime Minister Tomislav Donchev and World Bank Vice President for Europe and Central Asia Cyril Muller signed a memorandum of understanding, partnership and support in the absorption of EU structural and investment funds for the period 2014-2020 in Sofia.
The document provides for concluding bilateral agreements for technical assistance to all managing authorities and beneficiaries financed by operational programme Good Governance. The World Bank will provide consulting services in priority areas for investment of EU funds in Bulgaria, including environment protection, transport, energy, rural development, forestry, fisheries, financial instruments, and public administration.
"For Bulgaria, the World Bank is not just a consultant, it is a strategic partner not only in providing technical or sectoral expertise...but also long-term planning of reforms in all critical sectors," Donchev, who is Deputy Prime Minister in charge of EU funds and economic policies, said at the signing ceremony.
"We believe that in the context of the new framework for partnership now being drafted Bulgaria will take full advantage of its membership in the World Bank Group in the implementation of operational programmes of the EU, both by the government and the private sector,” Muller said, according to a government press release.
Muller's visit is his first to Bulgaria since assuming his current post on July 1. Bulgaria is the first country of his European tour.
This is the second time a comprehensive partnership document has been signed, the first one being in 2012.