Bulgaria, Romania EU Entry Slammed as Huge Mistake
The European Union did the right thing by deciding to let Bulgaria and Romania join the block, but the decision was taken too early, Prof. Werner Weidenfeld, one of the most outspoken critics of the two countries accession, said in an exclusive interview for Novinite.com.
According to the professor of political science at Munich University, Germany, the main reasons for Bulgaria's and Romania's entry to the European Union were political ones and were also a kind of award for the stability of both countries during the 1990s.
"Problematic was the fact to announce their accession without checking if they fulfill the criteria for membership completely," Werner Weidenfeld said.
He believes that following the conclusions that other EU member states drew from the cases of Romania and Bulgaria in future enlargement rounds, they will double-check if the candidates - mainly the states from the Western Balkans - fulfill the membership criteria completely.
Asked about how risky is Brussels decision to freeze millions of euros in EU aid for Bulgaria at these times of financial crisis, Prof. Werner Weidenfeld said:
"The EU has no money to waste. Frankly speaking, in the Bulgarian case, you could say: take it or leave it."
- » PM Borisov was Congratulated on the Way Bulgaria Protects Borders at Brussels Summit
- » EC to Provide Aid to Greece, Poland, Lithuania and Bulgaria on Natural Disasters
- » Bulgarian Foreign Minister will Open 7th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Danube Region
- » Bulgaria Tops EU Poverty Risk Ranking
- » Cohesion Policy: EU Invests in the Trams of Sofia
- » 330 Meetings and Conferences Held in Bulgaria as Part of its EU Presidency
"Even in the middle of the week during day time, all the cafes are full of people..."
Same in Plovdiv. But to be honest I think most locals round here if offered double the money on the condition that they are forced to be twice as productive (hypothetical I know), they wouldn't take it.
wow, sounds very interesting what are you doing.
It's funny, people in Bulgaria always ask, why their country is so poor and others are richer. The answer is not so difficult, but more difficult is to change habits.
I mean, it is also ok to show up at 9:50h, when you stay until 20h or you do the work so quickly that you need only 6h for what other take 8h. But this is hardly the case.
In Sofia the situation is still better then the rest of the country. When I come to Sofia to visit the agencies I work for, I see motivated and skilled people. Some worked for a couple of years aborad.
In Varna there are just a few people who deserve their money. Even in the middle of the week during day time, all the cafes are full of people...
Yes, I came back 3 months ago and work in one of the institutes of the bulgarian academy of sciences - I model the relationships between the mechanical properties and the microstructure of all kinds of materials, including nanocomposites, also did other stuff, again using mathematical modeling and computer simulation.
This is used a lot where you have high quality production and is a major scientific tool in general, not only in the industry. So I had a good life so far.
Helas, not in BG - we have to do tremendous work here. Maybe the smartest people I worked with, like ideas and organization and indeed reliability, are the Germans - we dont even speak about productiveness.
But in BG nothing is the same - I went once in an office building in plain center of sofia - all were of German and other foreign companies and people were still showing up at work at 9:50am although they have really good salaries.
So there is definitely a mentality problem here. And a sponsorship prolem, but while we can always try to find sponsors, little can be done with the mentality.
"Now the western european (mostly net donours of EU funds, with Germany on the top) can't sell their products to the eastern markets anymore, while at home more people are loosing jobs. And also there is election time in Germany."
We're all being fleeced here, oh wait, that's a sheep joke, crap......Germans are very smart folks. See how fast they cut payroll in response to slack demand. Bulgaria is full of mismanaging farm tard idiots. Let that place burn.
There is a mysterious phenomenon that is connected to brushing ones teeth and drinking orange juice.
If I get up in the morning and drink a glass of orange juice before I brush my teeth it tastes refreshingly sweet in a citrusy way, BUT if I brush my teeth first, that same sweet orange juice is unpalatably bitter...
Nelly, you recently you seem to be brushing your teeth before reading the SNA juice (metaphorically speaking).
quite interesting your point. What is your institute doing? Did I understand you right, that you came 3 months ago to Bulgaria?
The complaining about skilled labourforce I hear from every part. I work in the PR/Advertising/Internet and Design branch, but also know people working in the energy sector.
Everywhere you hear that they can't find good people. Instead there are folks, coming for an interview, saying that they want just a job, while asked why they are interested in the position. People who have difficult to find even the office, if they are appearing. Some might have some skills but asking for sky high salaries, not mentioned company cars and other benefits. But when they are hired, they come and go whenever they want and do everything but working.
People always looking for work until they find a job.
I personally do - in less than 3 months that Im working here I brought to my institute several thousands of euros using my connections from other EU countries organizing things and creating new contacts because the lack of money and the isolation are stunning in what is left from our scientific research. but we need more, much more.
Still didnt find talented people to send them to do a PhD abroad because there is no interest and anyway I wont send proteges or idiots. So I do what i can at the moment and without much help outside my job.
I would be surprised if BG was anywhere near paying in as much as it receives, even after al the funding cuts (although will be happily proved wrong if someone can provide the data). You have to remember that the funds being cut are ones with strings attached and which simply run out after a while. eg PHARE and SAPARD are both transitional funds I believe, which need to be used within the transition period (maybe 10 years). After that they simply dissapear. Since they are now blocked and Bulgaria is nearing the end of the transition period, these funds will be lost. Other funds like infrastructure funds are generally not with strings attached and will be paid out sooner or later. Please correct me someone if this wrong - but that's my understanding.
Here's some data from the infallible wikipedia :-)
BG will be a net beneficiary of 10B EUR in the next few years. Obviously that figure will now be reduced, but not by 8B EUR!
"Also besides having some EU money stolen are there any other negative ramifications of BG being in the EU?"
I can think of no negative ramifications in joining the EU for BG. The EU provides stability, keeps the politicians on their toes (ok tries to), enables Bulgarians to study abroad and gain meaninggul degrees, makes investment in BG a lot easier than it was for other EU states and so on. The list is endless. It's only a bit of a pain in the ass for the politicians who now have to pretend to behave, but even they benefit with their dodgy deals (at the expense of others in BG who therefore benefit less).
As long as there is something like EU fonds, there were temptation to misuse it. The political will was always to balance the losses and to emphasize on other benefits due to the EU membership. Before Eastern Europe was welcomed because as new markets for the western products, which are facing saturated markets. So on the one hand those countries receive a lot of EU funds, but also buying western products with that money, so it went back to the sender, with some profit on top. Now the region falled hardly (Ungaria e.g., BG economy starts already to shrink, which will be worsen in the summer). Now the western european (mostly net donours of EU funds, with Germany on the top) can't sell their products to the eastern markets anymore, while at home more people are loosing jobs. And also there is election time in Germany. So people are quick to say, no more money for corrupt eastern european countries anymore.
The failure of the BG government not to speeden up reforms, so a lot of trust and credit is lost, which is in time of crises dearley needed.
Last time I checked it was about balanced - BG paid about as much fee for its EU membership as it received from EU. But if the EU withdraws some more funds, then we may become a net donor to the EU which doesnt make much sense for us, being the poorest one.