Bulgarian President: Judicial Reforms Require New Constitutional Changes

Politics » DOMESTIC | January 19, 2016, Tuesday // 14:21
Bulgaria: Bulgarian President: Judicial Reforms Require New Constitutional Changes Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev (L) with Prime Minister Boyko Borisov at an annual conference on January 19, 2016. Photo by EPA/BGNES

The economic growth of Bulgaria is directly connected with the need of immediate reforms in the judicial system of the country, which requires amendments to the Constitution, said Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev at the opening ceremony of the 10th Annual Government Meets the Business Conference organised by the Capital weekly newspaper.

According to Plevneliev, a major domestic problem of Bulgaria and of the Balkan region is the continuing battle between the oligarchic business and the socially responsible entrepreneurs and it can be resolved through a change in the Constitution aimed at speeding up reforms in the judicial system.

“Introduce electronic services and government, introduce complete transparency in the public procurements, introduce anticorruption legislation,” Plevneliev said addressing the government. “In Bulgaria and everywhere in the region the problem is the same and the solution is reforms."

The President underlined that the judicial reform is “in the centre of everything” and without properly working judicial institutions, Bulgaria should not expect an increase in foreign
investments and a better standard of living.

Special attention, according to Plevneliev, has to be paid to the upcoming adoption by the National Assembly of the procedural laws, of the amendments to the judicial power law and the introduction of effective anticorruption legislation. A new change to the Constitution of the country will speed up these reforms and will as a consequence return citizens’ trust in the government, announced Plevneliev.

In December, 2015 one of the key parties in the right-wing Reformist Bloc (RB), Democrats for Strong Bulgaria (DSB), withdrew its support for the government and became an opposition party after the Parliament voted for an amended version of the judicial reform proposals and prompted the Justice Minister Hristo Ivanov to step down. However, most of the proposed changes to the Constitution were accepted by lawmakers.

In his speech, the President underlined that Bulgaria was among the five best-performing economies in Europe last year, which was due to the increased export towards Germany and other countries in the Southeastern region. Besides the risks, according to Plevneliev, the Bulgarian economy is developing well, a proof for which is a reported 2.8% growth for the economy, 40% increase in foreign investments and a decrease of the deficit and unemployment in the country.

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Tags: Rosen Plevneliev, anticorruption, amendments, constitution, judicial reform
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