Bulgaria Remains Among 12 Countries Subject to Special Monitoring
The European Commission has established yet again an extreme imbalance in Bulgaria’s economy. The country remains among the 12 EU member-states which are subject to special monitoring.
The bank sector has been stabilised but the legacy of weak supervision has not been overcome. Actions are still needed in order to remove the weaknesses of the financial sector revealed during the stress tests – including banking and non-banking supervision, and obstacles in the procedures for insolvency.
Great firm indebtedness has also been established. The percentage of bad credits is a two-digit number, unlike the average European level.
State enterprises with the biggest debt are those in the energy sector. An example is being given of the Belene NPP. Because of the Belene NPP, Bulgaria paid Russia a forfeit of over EUR 601 M, or 1.3% of GDP.
The labour market has shown improvement but the level of employment continues to be low and long-term unemployment continues to be high.
The grey economy and undeclared labour remain a large problem. The bad integration of the Roma has also been mentioned.
The problem of an ageing population still remains and data of the Migration Directorate with the Interior Ministry is cited, showing that 14% of Bulgarians live abroad.
The income of the richest part of the population is seven times higher than that of the poorest sections of the population.
The problems of corruption and lack of confidence in the judicial system which hinder investments are mentioned again.
Last year’s recommendations remain nearly unfulfilled, showed the report. Bulgaria has utilised a mere 33% of gratuitous funds under programmes of the common budget until 2020.
Out of the 13 countries subject to special monitoring, only Finland has dealt with its economic imbalance via reforms.
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