Opinion Poll

International Politician with the Greatest Contribution to Bulgaria in 2009

Who are the politicians from around the world – from foreign governments or international organizations – who have contributed the most to Bulgaria’s development in 2009?

Jose Manuel Barroso - President of the European Commission

(As President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Barroso has unwaveringly supported reform efforts in Bulgaria in its quest to solve its post-EU accession problems. Barroso was backed for a second Presidential term by the Stanishev government in June. He welcomed the new Borisov government of Bulgaria in July, and aided its efforts which led to the unfreezing of most of Bulgaria's EU funds blocked in 2008. Barroso proposed additional compensations of EUR 300 M for Bulgaria over the shutdown of the four smaller reactors of the Kozloduy NPP, which was approved by the EU Council. He has been active in preventing new crises with Russian gas supplies from which Bulgaria stands to be badly affected.):

 333 votes.
Silvio Berlusconi - Prime Minister of Italy

(Silvio Berlusconi was the first foreign leader to visit the Bulgarian capital Sofia after the Borisov government took office. During his visit in October, Berlusconi vowed to boost bilateral economic ties and international energy projects including the Russian sponsored South Stream gas transit pipeline in which Italy is a vital participant. Berlusconi has vowed full support for the Borisov government. He received Bulgaria's highest state order "Stara Planina" by President Parvanov for his contribution to the development of Bulgarian-Italian relations.):

 113 votes.
Angela Merkel - Chancellor of Germany

(Bulgaria's Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, has repeatedly called German Chancellor Angela Merkel "A great friend of Bulgaria." Merkel who started her second term after winning the Germany elections in September, backed Borisov even while he still was only the Mayor of Sofia. Since winning the Bulgarian Parliamentary Elections, Borisov has met several times with the German Chancellor including during the celebrations for the 20th year since the Fall of the Berlin Wall. Merkel has welcomed the fact that his GERB party, a fellow European People's Party member, has come to form the new Bulgarian government.):

 233 votes.
Barack Obama - President of the USA

(The Obama Administration has deepened the cooperation and unprecedentedly good relations between the USA and Bulgaria. President Obama has undertaken a course of greater international engagement with America's allies and has improved relations with the EU of which Bulgaria has benefited in wider terms especially as a US ally in the reconstruction efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. As early as his election campaign, Obama encouraged Bulgaria to continue to fight against corruption and organized crime. His administration has moved to support the EU to guarantee its energy security in order to prevent potential gas crises, including by backing the Nabucco project. In April 2009, the US Administration participated in the World Energy Forum in Sofia by sending its Special Envoy for Eurasian Energy, Ambassador Richard L Morningstar. Bulgaria has been eager to welcome Barack Obama on a formal state visit.):

 271 votes.
Nicolas Sarkozy - President of France

(Building on his role in the freeing of the Bulgarian nurses in Libya in 2007, in 2009, French President Sarkozy had dynamic relations with Bulgaria which were given a boost after the coming to power of Borisov's GERB party, a fellow member of the European People's Party. In October, Borisov paid a visit to Sarkozy in Paris, where the French President agreed to facilitate a cancelation of the deal for the purchase of two corvettes by the already struggling Bulgarian government, and told Borisov French companies might be interested in the construction of the Belene Nuclear Plant. The Bulgarian Prime Minister has made Sarkozy's positive role for Bulgaria clear by stating, "Thank God Sarkozy is a good friend of mine." (The two have known each other since their former top positions at the respective Interior Ministries.)):

 228 votes.

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