About: Bulgarian Presidency

China 23-05-2018

China says 16+1 summits are good for EU

Annual summits between China and central and eastern European countries are beneficial to the European Union as a whole, the Chinese government told Bulgaria's foreign minister, brushing off concerns that Beijing is seeking to divide the continent.
Enlargement 17-05-2018

EU pledges funds to Western Balkans, but no firm promises in Sofia

The European Union pledged fresh funds for the Western Balkans on Thursday (17 May) to help its transport and digital infrastructure, renewable energy and education efforts. It also agreed to work closely on "security challenges". But talk of further EU enlargement remained elusive.
Enlargement 17-05-2018

Tusk: With friends like Trump, who needs enemies

The European Union's top official launched a stinging attack Wednesday (16 May) on President Donald Trump, slamming his "capricious assertiveness" and saying the US leader acted more like an enemy than a friend.
Future EU 15-05-2018

EU budget approval before European elections looking increasingly uncertain

Rotating EU presidency holder Bulgaria admitted yesterday (14 May) there was no certainty that the new long-term EU budget for 2020-2027 could be adopted before next year’s European elections.
Enlargement 14-05-2018

EU to meet Balkan leaders under shadow of Trump

EU leaders will seek to boost ties with the Balkans at a summit on Thursday (17 May), but it looks set to be overshadowed by the rift with US President Donald Trump over the Iran nuclear deal.

EU post-Brexit defences starting to take shape

A broad European military strategy involving Britain after Brexit has started to take shape with France at its centre, often in negotiations far from the Brussels spotlight and, in one top-level EU meeting, without the UK defence minister.
Future EU 30-04-2018

France, Germany vow joint eurozone reform plan for June summit

Germany and France on Saturday (28 April) pledged to deliver a joint proposal to reform the eurozone in time for a leaders summit in June, despite their big differences on the future of the bloc.
Economy & Jobs 25-04-2018

Brussels won’t pay for the vodkas at Sofia EU youth conference

The European Commission reserves the right to approve the final financial report and to audit the expenses of an EU-funded youth conference that took place in Sofia on 17-19 April, a Commission official who asked not to be named told EURACTIV.
Economy & Jobs 23-04-2018

European Youth conference under Bulgarian Presidency leaves sour aftertaste

Representatives of the European Youth Forum have expressed outrage at the way the EU Bulgarian Presidency organised an EU-sponsored youth event in Sofia last week, pointing out a perfunctory approach, mismanagement and inappropriate behaviour on the part of government officials.
Digital 20-04-2018

MEPs and Commission headed for showdown over international phone call rates in the EU

The European Parliament is holding its ground on its controversial proposal to lower the costs of international phone calls within the EU, one week before a make-or-break round of negotiations on a sweeping telecoms bill.
Climate change 20-04-2018

The Brief – Climate dominoes

The EU wants to prove that its climate action credentials are genuine, which means being top of the class in taking the Paris Agreement seriously. That could all hinge on a series of meetings scheduled for next month. So no pressure then…
Energy 19-04-2018

EU energy efficiency debate skewed by bad maths, says study

Ongoing talks about the EU’s energy efficiency target for 2030 are deadlocked and the debate could have been skewed by the way initial cost estimates were calculated, according to a new study.
Enlargement 17-04-2018

Commission proposes starting EU talks with Albania, Macedonia

The European Commission proposed on Tuesday (17 April) to open EU membership talks with Albania and Macedonia, in line with its new focus on the integration of the Western Balkans.

Parliament shortlists two candidates for new OLAF chief

Finland’s Ville Itälä and Bulgaria’s Ivailo Kalfin were shortlisted by the European Parliament on Monday (16 April) for the post of the new Director-General of OLAF, the EU's anti-fraud office.
Enlargement 13-04-2018

The case for a joint ‘Western Balkans six’ accession to the EU

There could be no stronger incentive to overcome regional disputes and normalise relations than if the region would receive a clear message that all six countries will join the EU at the same time, writes Bekim Çollaku.
Enlargement 06-04-2018

The Trans-Europe Express, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS) – Europe’s frozen conflict

Russia is the undisputed master of engineering ‘frozen conflicts’ that prevent countries in its neighbourhood from building closer EU relations.
Enlargement 06-04-2018

Kosovo conundrum looms large over Western Balkans summit

As Bulgaria prepares for a Western Balkan summit in May, seen by many as the centrepiece of its EU Council Presidency, Sofia has realised that not all its guests want to sit at the same table.
Politics 29-03-2018

The Brief, powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS) – Bulgaria’s mid-term review

Three months of Bulgaria’s EU presidency have elapsed. So how is the bloc’s poorest member faring in its debut at the helm?
Global Europe 26-03-2018

Erdogan comes to leaders meeting with footage exposing ‘EU terrorism support’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan arrives in the Bulgarian port city of Varna today (26 March) equipped with video footage that allegedly illustrates Ankara’s claim that EU countries host terrorists and do nothing to fight them.
Enlargement 23-03-2018

Rajoy has an issue with Western Balkans summit in Sofia

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has told his Bulgarian colleague Boyko Borissov in no uncertain terms that he has a problem with the Western Balkans summit in Sofia, scheduled for 17 May, and may not even come if Kosovo is participating.
Global Europe 14-03-2018

Bulgaria reacts to disturbing statement by Turkey’s Erdogan

Bulgaria’s foreign ministry told Turkey on Tuesday (13 March) that internationally agreed borders cannot be changed, reacting to a statement by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who said on Sunday the Bulgarian city of Kardzhali finds itself “in the spiritual boundaries of Turkey”.
Economy & Jobs 13-03-2018

Bulgarian Presidency skips EP’s Istanbul Convention debate

The European Parliament debated on Monday (12 March) the problems facing a landmark convention on protecting women from violence, which several member states, including Bulgaria, have yet to ratify. But Bulgaria, the current holder of the rotating EU presidency, was notable in its absence.

Austria plans to put immigration and borders at heart of EU presidency

Austria plans to use its upcoming presidency of the European Union this year to shift the bloc's focus from resettling refugees within the EU towards keeping further waves of migrants outside the bloc's external borders, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said on Friday (9 March).
Energy 06-03-2018

Bozhidar Danev: Part of Bulgaria’s fuel sector lies in the grey economy

Unusually low fuel prices in Bulgaria are probably the result of cartels, or contraband, Bozhidar Danev told EURACTIV.com in an exclusive interview, saying the authorities have  so far been unable or unwilling to address the issue.