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EP evaluating Bulgaria

Date: 06.11.2008

European Parliament's budget control committee in the European Parliament has released a report concerning Bulgaria, a report thas been prepared following the visit of the deputy head of the commission to the country, Niels Lundgren. The official had arrived in Bulgaria to discuss projects that are currently underway and financed by the European Commission, as well as pending projects that have been pencilled in to be financed by the Commission in the future.

“The basic problem is in regard to social public works where the risk for corruption, finance, mis-allocation of funds and conflict of interest is the strongest”, Lundgren said, as quoted by Bulgarian news agency BTA.

There were other major problems identified by the MEPs on their visit to Bulgaria, such as the lack of administrative capacity for investigation and assessing projects in progress, their subsequent legitimate documentation, the lack of qualified specialists and other specialised personnel on all levels, and the severe lack of experience of the workforce as a whole.

European diplomats and members of the Commission who have been on a visit to Bulgaria have stated that they see a clear indication that Bulgarian authorities and politicians “have the decent desire to combat corruption”, as reported by Dnevnik daily, “but so far there is little or absolutely no effect to that”.

“What remains is for the results to be seen. There has been a change in the legislation in the positive direction, other laws also have to reinforced, and very notorious cases of corruption must be investigated and pursued without any further delay and with the out most effectiveness and determination, the culprits must be punished and the stolen property must be confiscated immediately thereof”, the executive summary of the MEPs report said, as quoted by Dnevnik.

After the recommendations addressed to Bulgaria, the country and its politicians will be encouraged to continue their work and the structural amendments and reforms in the legal system.

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