Subsidies for Political Parties in Bulgaria Up 10 Times in 10 Years
Political parties in Bulgaria have increased their subsidies 10 times in the past ten years, according to calculations of the Finance Ministry.
Political parties were first granted state funding in 2002, the total amount standing at BGN 4.500 million.
Two years later, the amount of the subsidies increased to a rate of over BGN 5.356 million, according to Trud daily.
In 2013, political parties in Bulgaria received state funding to the tune of over BGN 45 million.
Owing to the lower turnout in the last elections, political parties are to receive a total of BGN 35 million.
The biggest amount of subsidies for political parties was registered in 2011, when the formations received a total of over BGN 50 million.
The allocation of state money to political parties was introduced in 2001 during the government of the right-wing United Democratic Forces (UDF). The amount of the subsidy was set at BGN 1 per vote.
By 2008, the amount was increased to 2% of the minimum wage for the current year through changes to the Political Parties Act.
In 2009, during the term in office of the three-way coalition government, a rate of 5% of the minimum wage was approved as a result of new legislative changes.
The center-right GERB (Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria) government also amended party subsidy rules, cutting them by 15%, as a result of which the formations received BGN 12 per vote, provided that they had passed the 1% threshold.
The socialist-led government changed rules by cutting the amount of party subsidies by BGN 1.
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