Business | June 21, 2001, Thursday // 00:00

Marcin Wiszniewski, East Europe strategist at Morgan Stanley:

Bulgaria`s new leader, the King Simeon II, is set to pursue an aggressive program of economic reforms. In my opinion the NMS II economic agenda might appear less populist than it seems. `The king economic team is dominated by young western-educated financial professionals - many of them expatriates returning to Bulgaria from careers in intenational financial centers. `I think the past four years have been a success for economic policy.`

Coushic Rudra, leading expert on Bulgaria at the Lehman Brothers investment bank

We definitely expected the King`s movement to be the leading party in the new Parliament but the exit polls exceeded our expectations. We did not anticipate the movement to have 50% of the seats in the new parliament. In my opinion an absolute majority grants stable governance. Even more the King`s movement declared its intentions to form a coalition. I think that the foreign investors confidence in Bulgaria is not interfered. The risks always exist when you have a new ruling party with no administrative experience. In fact a working government can be formed only by the King`s movement and the MRF but I believe that king Simeon II will include the former ruling party UDF as well.

Fiona Milun, `Economist` expert for Bulgaria

In my opinion the King`s coalition guarantee for changes in 800 days may prove to be a wise move because if nothing extremely negative happens, people will notice the improvement of the living standard within two, two and a half years. The personality of king Simeon II could attract interest of foreign investors, but I do not expect `miracle` flow of investments in the country. In fact I do not believe that miracles can happen to any economy.

Ed Parker from Fitch IBKA credit agency

In my opinion the pronouncements that Ivan Kostov could resign as the leader of the former ruling UDF may raise the chances for coalition between UDF and NMS II. The key issue for potential investors will be the economic policy of the new government. Experts from Fitch IBKA will visit Bulgaria in September and will revise the credit rating of the country.

Charles Robertson from ING Barings

Coalition between UDF and NMS II is the best scenario for the next government.

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