Expectations for forming new government put off for beginning of May

Despite the expectations of GERB Leader Borissov for constituting a cabinet by end-April, it will be a fact in the beginning of May, as coalition partners have still points to discuss
Photo: BGNES

The newly elected 44th National Assembly of Bulgaria will hold its first meeting tomorrow - April 19th. One of its first tasks will be approving the new government. During the Easter holidays the GERB party, which has been negotiating with the nationalist coalition "United Patriots" over forming a government predicted that the cabinet will likely be formed in the first days of next month, after May 4th. Until recently, GERB leader Boyko Borisov said that the new government will start work by the end of April. But the delay shows that a big number of things should get done before the cabinet can be formed.

The government program that the parties signed last week should be extended from its current 21 to about 200 pages. It's not about renegotiating but it is about specifying the details and this requires much effort. The program, however, has no value without signing a coalition agreement, as GERB requires that the agreement is 4-year-long. Negotiations for such an agreement should begin this week and are expected to end quickly. GERB, also insists that the document must be signed by GERB leader Boyko Borisov as well as the leaders of the three formations part of the United Patriots - Valeri Simeonov /NFSB/, Volen Siderov, /Ataka / and Krasimir Karakachanov /VMRO/. GERB’s requirement aims at preventing situations that marked negatively the previous coalition government in which not all parties of the Reformist Bloc stuck to the coalition agreement and at times even acted as opposition. On the other hand, at the insistence of the United Patriots, the agreement will read that all important topics will be discussed weekly by the coalition. Apparently, the nationalists want to protect themselves from unilateral decisions of the larger coalition partner.

The distribution of ministerial posts will be described in detail in the future coalition agreement but currently it is clear that Prime Minister will be GERB leader Boyko Borisov.

According to most observers, the basic agreement for forming of the "Borisov 3" Cabinet has already been reached and no major surprises could be expected.

There have been no indications that GERB could have problems in Europe because of its coalition with nationalist formations. A well-known European rightist-conservative party will dominate the executive power in Bulgaria but this time allied with a partner who is not part of the European People's Party. This is is not decisive for the success or failure of the government, because as seen in the previous government of Borissov, the fact that both coalition partners belonged to the family of the European People's Party, did not prevent a failure of the coalition.

English: Alexander Markov

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