The goal of each European country is to become a member of the European Union. This will give it substantial opportunities in almost all spheres of life, especially in economics. Bulgaria is a multi-party country with a parliamentary system. The party can get into the Parliament in case it exceeds a 4% barrier. The power is divided into legislative, judicial and executive. The legislative power is represented by the Parliament (National Assembly) that consists of 240 deputies. They are elected for a 4-year term by voting. The President is elected for a 5-year term and performs the function of the Head of the State. Each of these branches should work perfectly, and together they are one powerful system.
The main regulator in the country is the Constitution. It contains the main principals that regulate the main spheres of life in the country. Though some politicians say that it was adopted at the very beginning of democracy in Bulgaria by the members of the ex-communistic party that were the majority; thus, it was based on the confusion of opposition. As a result, it is not perfect and not up to date.
The representative of the executive power is the President. He has a function to schedule elections and represents the given country abroad. The executive power is also represented by the Council of Ministers that is formed by the majority in the Parliament.
Judges and prosecutors represent the judicial power. Half of the judges are appointed by the National Assembly, while the other half – by the body’s judiciary.
These three branches work as a whole, and together they have considerable power in Bulgaria.
Current Political and Economic Situation
The political situation in Bulgaria is new. There were elections to the Parliament, and as a result, a new Prime minister and a cabinet of ministers with EU representatives. The country is in a great depression and unemployment; it has the lowest wages in the EU, and the legislative background to perform the EU requests is not perfect. If the situation is uncertain, there is a substantial need in one powerful leader to do all the necessary work to recover the trust of the EU. The elections should have been held in July, but they were held in May, and the results were unexpected to everyone. The system of socialism falls, and the new one is represented in the Parliament. Despite such democratic elections, there was a protest, but without radical consequences. The Chairman of the EPP Group said: “The electoral campaign in Bulgaria is finished. I regret that it didn’t allow for a composed debate, program versus program”. It means that Bulgaria is considered to follow the right way for the improvement of its policies and democratic principles. The GERB party won the elections, and the former finance minister P.Orescharski became the Prime Minister and Rosen Plevneliev – the President of Bulgaria.
Membership in the EU
Bulgaria became a member of the EU on January 1, 2007. This gave the country an opportunity to take part in the decision-making process. It takes several stages on each of them; there are representatives of Bulgaria such as the European Commission Working Group (represent the State administration), the EU Council (representatives of all EU member states should be present), COREPER (has permanent representatives), the Council of European Union (as it is a complex body, Bulgarian representatives are introduced there).
First, two years of Bulgaria’s membership brought the improvement to international affairs and trade between European and Balkan countries. Economic achievements are not only visible in international affairs, but also take an active part in establishing policies that regulate economic relations in Europe. As a result, in the first two years of membership, they became the first Balkan country with economic growth of 6%.
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During the first three years of the membership, Bulgaria was at the bottom of EU and Balkan countries. It was the result of ineffective work in the sphere of social values, corruption, and law. From next year workers from those two countries will have the same rights of freedom of movement as other EU nationals.
The negative aspect of Bulgaria’s relations with the EU is the growth of unemployment that caused immense emigration. Thus, the EU membership of the country allowed most of the former Bulgarians free access to the world’s labor market. It means that there is a unique opportunity to work in another country, but for Bulgaria, it is the loss of employees. All these principles are regulated by the documents of the European Union, and they should be submitted.
Bulgaria is still working on the policies and achieving significant results in fighting against corruption, and the EU is constantly monitoring this process. The EU gives some aid to Bulgaria, but the level of corruption still remains; therefore, they should control the management of funds.
The coordination of EU issues is set up on several principles: decision making decentralization (the issues are divided into parts and prepared by some structures, not by one), three-stage structure (all the affairs are coordinated by the working groups of the Council of European Affairs, the Council of European Affairs itself and the Council of Ministers), restructuring of the working groups (one working group may consist of different members of other working groups) and changes in the types of documents (new types of documents are presented) (Directorate for Coordination of EU Affairs, n.d.b).
Bulgaria’s membership in the EU is highly significant for the country, but it gives it a substantial responsibility in creating policies that are regulated and mentored by the EU. The relations between them are strictly outlined in documents.
Bailout: General Attitude
The bailout is given to the country that needs money for some need or promoting some program. The usage of bailouts is specific for the EU as one of its aims is to provide help to the countries that are in need. These funds are strictly controlled and, of course, should be used according to the purpose.
In order to receive a bailout, a country should try its best to reform the main laws concerning economic, social and health spheres in the country. If the government provides examples of such improvements, especially in the legislative power, the bailout can be appointed. Therefore, after using such help from the EU, a country prepares a report with precise expenses concerning this bailout.
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Bailout Support to Greece: Bulgaria’s attitude
Firstly, the bailout is appointed to the country that has a rapid need in this money. The Council of Ministers takes into account the number of bailouts appointed the country and the appropriateness of its usage. If Greece has been given a number of the bailout, and the funds have gone nowhere, it would have been the sign not to give it next time.
Secondly, as there is a considerable crisis in the world, a number of protests were in some countries, especially numerous were in Greece. If this continued, the country would be bankrupt and start looking for funds to get money for renovation. This is an impact to allow the EU to give it the bailout, but not too high as the last time, but enough to make a country work as usual.
Thirdly, many such countries want to get a bailout in order to improve their economic state. Bulgaria can also be a candidate for money, but it has to make its laws about social values and corruption in the country work better. This is a demand of the EU, and a country is constantly working on it.
One more point is that the bailout is given to the country, the banking system of which is rather stable. Consequently, the given country will give that money back to the EU. As a result, the improvement of banking system laws is of substantial essence nowadays.
As conclusion, there are many positive aspects of joining Bulgaria to the EU. Nevertheless, this country remains at the bottom of the EU for a long time. However, there are very slight victories on the way to be a valuable member of the European Union, namely the elections that were held this year.
Nevertheless, some scientists consider that Bulgaria was not ready to be accepted to the EU. This was the result of many years of observation of this country. Judicial reform should be performed, and the laws against corruption and organized crime should be presented in the country.
Analyzing all the above mentioned, one can say that Bulgaria achieved the goal as the country strengthened the relations with other European countries. However, the expectations of the EU were not approved, although it tries its best to comply with all the requests and instructions of the Union in order not to be excluded or not to be the worst country. These elections brought hope to Bulgarians as the party had changed, and new trends are proposed.