сряда, 29 октомври 2014 г.

Citation in Bloomberg

Borissov Sees Snap Bulgarian Ballot If Cabinet Talks Fail
Boyko Borissov, the Bulgarian ex-prime minister who won elections this month, wants to form a minority coalition to avoid having to go back to the ballot box.
Borissov proposed an alliance with the Reformers Bloc, a group of five parties, which will draw support for each policy issue from the other six parties in parliament, he told reporters in the capital Sofia today. He spoke after meeting political leaders to discuss ways to avoid a snap ballot in the European Union’s poorest member.
“If the Reformers decide to join the coalition at their meeting today, we can sign a coalition agreement with the distribution of ministerial posts on Friday,” Borissov said. “Holding early elections in the winter would be fatal for the country. There are too many unresolved problems piling up.”
Borissov is preparing to lead Bulgaria’s fifth cabinet in two years as the Balkan nation grapples with protracted political turmoil amid a widening budget deficit, a stagnant economy and pressure from the EU to overhaul its institutions. The Oct. 5 vote was called after the Socialist party lost power following the seizure in June of Corporate Commercial Bank AD, the country’s fourth-largest lender.
The yield on sovereign euro-denominated bonds maturing in September 2024 was little changed at 2.93 percent at 1:10 p.m. in Sofia. The cost of insuring the country’s debt against non-payment for five years using credit-default swaps rose less than one basis point to 145, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Three Options

Borissov outlined three possible options for the cabinet at parliament’s inaugural session yesterday. Apart from creating a coalition to rule for a full four years, the choices included creating a cabinet for one or two years and holding early elections next year or in 2016, he said.
“I’m optimistic there will be a government,” Daniel Smilov, a political analyst at the Center for Liberal Strategies in Sofia, said by phone today. “It’s too early to say how long it would stay in power. It all depends on how well it deals with Corpbank and with the debts in the energy industry.”
Borissov’s Gerb party is the biggest group in the 240-member assembly with 84 seats. It wants to keep tax on personal income and corporates flat at 10 percent and overhaul the indebted energy industry. The Reformers Bloc has 23 lawmakers. The minority coalition would rely on other parties including the Patriotic Front, which has pledged support for some issues, to pass legislation.
The Socialists, the second-biggest force in the new legislature, holds 39 seats and said it would neither join the coalition, nor try to form a government on its own.
The Socialists said they will back Gerb’s effort to replace central bank Governor Ivan Iskrov over Corporate Commercial’s failure.

Crisis, Instability

President Rosen Plevneliev, speaking at parliament’s first session, urged parties to form a coalition government as soon as possible to stabilize the country.
“The combination of various external and domestic crises leads to instability,” Plevneliev said. “The citizens, investors and markets are nervous. The problems are too many and their solution can no longer wait. Debts and deficits are increasing, while investment is at unsatisfactory levels.”
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development last month cut its 2014 forecast for Bulgaria’s economic growth to 1.5 percent from 1.9 percent.
A budget-revision plan envisages the deficit widening to 4 percent of economic output this year, compared with the original target of 1.8 percent. It also foresees selling 4.5 billion lev ($2.9 billion) in state securities, which would bring the debt level to 28.4 percent of output from 23 percent in August.
If the coalition talks fail, snap elections may be held next year together with a planned nationwide municipal vote, or in 2016 with a presidential election, Borissov said yesterday. If he leads a full four-year term cabinet, he won’t run for president in 2016, he said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Elizabeth Konstantinova in Sofia at ekonstantino@bloomberg.net

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