Prime Minister Stefan Yanev: Approval of the central government budget update to enable social systems to provide support required for Bulgarian citizens in the next COVID-19 wave


“A large percentage of the budget allocations has been spent. We appeal to the parties that are represented in Parliament to find, by the end of the month, if possible, the time and willpower to vote and approve the proposed reallocations within the national budget and the proposed adjustments for the budgets of the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) and of the public social insurance.” This is what Prime Minister Stefan Yanev stated after the closure of the working meeting convened by President Rumen Radev and dedicated to the situation and the trends of the march of the Coronavirus pandemic countrywide. The meeting was attended by: Mr. Galab Donev, Deputy Prime Minister for Economic and Social Policies and Minister of Labor and Social Policy; Mr. Stoicho Katsarov, Minister of Health; Mr. Assen Vassilev, Minister of Finance; Mr. Nikolai Denkov, Minister of Education and Science; and Mrs. Stela Baltova, Minister of Tourism.


Prime Minister Yanev stressed to the media that the approval of the central government budget update would ensure the predictability and capacity of the social systems to prepare and provide the support required for Bulgarian citizens in the outbreak of the next COVID-19 wave. Extra allocations would likewise help the health system and thus ensure the smooth performance of the medics and the hospitals that are in the front line of the fight against the new virus.


“We count on the Ministry of Health experts and on the Health Crisis Management Plan that they have drawn up. However, this Plan must be flexible enough to accommodate the relevant recommendations made and measures taken,” the Prime Minister said firmly. Mr. Yanev noted that the measures intended for the businesses should be very carefully weighed up. “It is my deep conviction that we should not close down any business offhand as part of it may not reopen and the recovery measures may turn out to be inefficient,” Prime Minister Stefan Yanev said.


The Prime Minister noted that the working meeting hosted by President Rumen Radev discussed in detail all aspects of the Government’s preparedness and the measures needed to deal with the Coronavirus consequences. The Prime Minister pointed out that the action reported covered not just the health system and its management but also education and the measures concerning the businesses, the tourism and the social system.


The working meeting focused, inter alia, on the wildfires situation in Bulgaria.  “Currently, the wildfires in the country are under control but as I have appealed time and again, this should not reassure us. We must be vigilant and ready for action and interaction with all national services with various agencies as well as with the volunteers who assist in firefighting efforts,” Prime Minister Yanev said. Further he said that along with all these activities the Government should be able to provide assistance to all people who had been affected by wildfires. “To that effect, we discussed with Finance Minister Vassilev to possibility to find reserves in the budget and in a lawful and appropriate manner to provide assistance to the affected municipalities, respectively to the affected people for their property and to lend support to the families of the forest rangers from the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry who lost their lives,” the Prime Minister said. Mr. Yanev recalled that he had appealed to the municipal authorities to finalize their damage estimation as soon as possible so that the central government could provide the funds earmarked for the affected Bulgarians in a short time.