On its first day of office, the new caretaker government of Prime Minister Stefan Yanev outlined the lines of continuity and change vis-a-vis the cabinet of Boyko Borissov. Foreign Minister Svetlan Stoev said Sofia would not change its stance towards N. Macedonia's EU accession, while Finance Minister Assen Vassilev said the 25-euro monthly bonus to pensions would remain for the coming months. However, all deputies to the Internal Minister were fired and Justice Minister Yanaki Stoilov said he would investigate claims of prisoners' abuse made by businessman Stanislav Ilchovsky.
VMRO calls for nationalist front against "gender ideology"
VMRO, the largest nationalist party - but which still fell short of the benchmark to enter the 45th Parliament - called for unification of nationalist and conservative parties. "Patriots need to contain the rise of gender ideology, nihilism and nationally irresponsible policy," party leader Krassimir Karakachanov said. He said that he is extending his invitation to the two parties that used to form the United Patriots coalition (Ataka and NFSB) and the far-right party of businessman Vesselin Mareshki Volya ("will"), but not to the newest contender for the nationalist vote, the Vazrazhdane party of Kostadin Kostadinov whom Mr Karakachanov called a "Stalin supporter".
Record exports of almost 3 billion euro in March
Bulgaria hit a record for exports in March, with products worth 2,91 billion euro sold on the global markets, the National Statistics Institute announced on Thursday. This is Sofia's best ever result and marks a 27 percent year-to-year increase compared to March 2020 when Covid-19 restrictions were still not completely enforced. The trade balance for March, however, remains negative, with Bulgaria importing products worth 0,5 billion euro more than it exported. A rise in copper exports (up 38 percent compared to March 2020, but mostly due to higher prices of the metal), grain, fuels and machine parts explain the better results.
Over a million Bulgarians are now vaccinated
On Thursday Bulgaria passed the 1-million people threshold of individuals who have had at least one Covid-19 vaccination. Currently, 1,035,763 people have had the first vaccine and 362,322 of them have already had both shots.