In 2004 the Institute for Market Economics (IME) presented its first Alternative Budget. Each year since that we have suggested an annual budgetary frame with lower taxes, more effective spending, bold reforms, and lower state interference. At the beginning of 2023, Bulgaria will not have a state budget drafted by a regular government and voted on by a parliamentary majority.
Once again, it has become clear that Bulgaria shall not be joining the Schengen agreement for some time, mostly due to the distrust in the work of our institutions and their ability to effectively guard the outer border of the visa-free area. Apart from the deeper European integration and the further inclusion to the “rich country club,” the accession to the Schengen Area could provide a couple of specific benefits to the Bulgarian economy.
The period of instability in 2021 could easily be redefined as stretching up to 2022, given that the cabinet of Kiril Petkov lasted twice as short as that of Plamen Oresharski. The most recent elections show that the political crisis in Bulgaria is far from over.
It is good to think about the situation now, what could have changed during the brief life of the 47th National Assembly, and what is laid out by the current caretaker government in Bulgaria.
In this episode, we talk about the Western Balkans in the context of the EU enlargement, the current situation in respective potential candidates, opportunities and threats resulting from premature entry into the EU, and the prospects for further European integration.
The EU Commission’s (EC) spring forecast, demonstrating the expected real growth for 2022 and 2023 was published exactly a day before the preliminary data for growth in the first quarter of 2022.
The conclusions of the ECB’s report is that establishing an environment that favors a steady convergence requires policies aiming at economic stability, as well as wide structural reforms. This statement holds regardless of whether we will adopt the Euro or not.
The Bulgarian government will spend over BGN 63 billion in 2022. For the first time, Bulgarian citizens can track the spending of their funds on a daily base in an accessible, interactive, and easy to use application.
In the last weeks, we saw debates between the state and the municipalities, which discussed options to increase the resources for local development, but once again these evolved in the direction of centralized solutions.