Valdis Dombrovskis: The European Semester report has nothing to do with monitoring

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EU Commissioner for the Economy in the Interest of the People Valdis Dombrovskis said in an exclusive interview with BNR that the European Semester report with recommendations for Bulgaria announced yesterday has nothing to do with the report on the cooperation and verification mechanism. He said this in connection with published publications that the monitoring of Bulgaria will continue:

“The European Semester is not related to the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism. As for the last one, there was already a report on it in October 2019. It concludes that Bulgaria has already met all the requirements. This has not changed and there is nothing new here. “.

Earlier today, the BSP demanded the resignation of Justice Minister Danail Kirilov because of yesterday’s report.

“Let us be clear – what we published yesterday is the European Semester report, as well as the specific recommendations for each of the member states. At its core, the European Semester is our main mechanism that coordinates the economic and fiscal policies of the countries. The positive news In fact, Bulgaria is the only Member State that does not violate the criteria for this year’s budget deficit, and we know that all countries are suffering from a severe recession, which has led to a serious increase in this deficit. The semester is not related to the cooperation and verification mechanism. As for the last one, there was already a report on it in October 2019. It concludes that Bulgaria has already met all the requirements. This has not changed and there is nothing here new, “Dombrowski said.

In response to the question “However, let’s clarify – are there any new moments regarding corruption? You yourself mentioned Bulgaria in connection with money laundering …”, Dombrovski answered:

“Let’s be clear – I repeat, last year’s report says that all the requirements have been met. This means that the European Commission is not currently preparing a new report on Bulgaria under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism and does not cover Bulgaria under this mechanism. European Semester, as you rightly mentioned money laundering, the European Commission has made recommendations for 11 member states, Bulgaria is one of them, and in recent years we have had a series of money laundering scandals in the EU, and we have recently published an action plan. And, yes, we will continue to look at this problem in the context of the European Semester. ”

Asked “However, you did not answer the question – are parts of the report on the cooperation and verification mechanism used in the report on the European Semester and especially on the issue of money laundering?”, Dombrowski said:

“Again, the European Semester is something different and deals mainly with economic, social and fiscal issues. The money laundering element has emerged in the European Semester, indeed, in recent years after the scandals in Europe. It concerns 11 countries and it is about The Commission is working on the rule of law, for example, and in this context it is setting up a new, horizontal rule of law mechanism, which will be monitored by all Member States.By continuing, but the new mechanism will be connected to the mechanism for cooperation and verification. Again – the conclusions of the Commission under the Cooperation and Verification not changed – Bulgaria has fulfilled all requirements. ”

Regarding Bulgaria’s candidacy for the eurozone

“Regarding the preparation of Bulgaria for joining the ERM2 mechanism, the work continues, as well as the capitalization of the bank, so we expect to hear the development from the Bulgarian authorities. And when it is over, as other commitments have already been fulfilled by Bulgaria, we can move forward with Bulgaria’s decision to join the waiting room. So, if the recapitalization is successful, the issue could be considered in July at a Eurogroup meeting. ”



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