Bulgaria May Appoint Coalition Government in Early May

  • Borissov’s Gerb, Patriots agree on 4-year ruling program
  • Ex-Finance Minister Goranov says he may take same job again

Former Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov’s Gerb party may soon agree on a coalition cabinet with the United Patriots, an alliance of nationalist parties, and present a government for parliament’s approval in early May, Borissov’s allies said.

Gerb and the Patriots have reached a preliminary agreement on a four-year program and talks are continuing, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, Gerb’s deputy chairman, said on his Facebook Wednesday. Gerb won 95 seats in the 240-member parliament in a March 26 snap vote, enough to form a government with the United Patriots who have 27 lawmakers. President Rumen Radev is expected to ask Borissov to form a cabinet after parliament convenes on April 19.

“We’ll probably complete the talks right before we propose a cabinet lineup for parliament approval, which is expected to happen in the beginning of May,” Vladislav Goranov, a lawmaker and former finance minister in Borissov’s previous cabinet, said in an interview with private BTV in Sofia Wednesday.

Borissov, 57, won the elections pledging to keep Bulgaria’s commitments to the EU and NATO. The Black Sea nation of 7.2 million people is looking to end the political upheaval that’s brought a spate of elections and restrained the country’s economy. The Socialists, who campaigned on closer ties with Russia, finished second in the elections with 80 seats in the assembly and declared that they’ll remain in opposition.

Finance Minister

Goranov said he may serve as finance minister again in Borissov’s third cabinet since 2009. Borissov campaigned on keeping the 10 percent flat income tax rate and a balanced fiscal policy. Gerb’s cabinet will also have the support of Will, a populist party of tycoon Vesselin Mareshki with 12 lawmakers, Borissov said in an emailed statement after meeting Mareshki on Tuesday.

Borissov resigned in November, two years before his cabinet’s term in office ended, after Gerb’s nominee lost the presidential vote against Radev, a U.S.-trained former Air Force chief backed by the Socialists. Borissov’s first government collapsed in 2013 after mass anti-austerity protests.

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