Bulgaria Deputy PM Hopes Govt Change Won't Affect EU Presidency

Bulgaria in EU | November 19, 2016, Saturday // 12:58|  views

Bulgaria's Deputy PM in resignation Meglena Kuneva. File photo, BGNES

Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister Meglena Kuneva has stressed the importance of keeping in office the administration that runs the EU Presidency preparations even after a new cabinet takes over.

Bulgaria is taking over the rotating EU presidency from Estonia on January 01, 2018 - six months ahead of the initial schedule after Britain held a referendum to leave the EU and relinquished its on six-month term that would have preceded Bulgaria's.

"Governments change, but what remains is a well and professionally prepared aministration," news website Dnevnik.bg quotes Kuneva as saying at a conference dedicated to the presidency.

The total expenditure earmarked for the Council of the EU Presidency this and the next to years amounts to BGN 150 M. If costs on repair works of key buildings such as the National Palace of Culture, the Parliament headquarters and the Boyana Residency are not counted, "we will have the cheapest presidency," Kuneva has argued.

She has regretted the fact that no separate budget was earmarked for the preparation and little was allocated to cultural events that could be held during the six months in question.

Repair works left aside, the only funding spent on the Presidency is, as of the moment, only for training the administration.

Kuneva, who was officially stripped of her role as coordinator of preparations (formally taken over by outgoing Prime Minister Boyko Borisov), has nevertheless continued overseeing the process.

Issues essential for Europe's future as the Brexit negotiations may take place partly under Bulgaria's Presidency, which makes it crucial for the country, Kuneva says.

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Tags: Meglena Kuneva, Council of the EU Presidency, EU presidency, Brexit


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