"If the most Russia dependent country with the lowest per capita GDP in the European Union can afford to stand up to Putin, everybody should be able to stand up to Putin". This is a quote from Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov, that was recently shared on social media by other notable European leaders. It is a part of an article, published in the New York Times, called "Once Best Friends, Bulgaria Takes a Stand Against Russia".
Petkov to order full inspection of TurkStream through Bulgaria
Mr Petkov has ordered a full investigation into alleged corrupt practices surrounding the construction of the transit gas pipeline TurkStream through Bulgaria, which was built quickly when Boyko Borissov was Prime Minister. The facility, which was financed through state funds totaling 3 billion levs, supplies Russian gas to Serbia through Bulgaria and was built in just one year.
Bulgaria has 102,000 Ukrainian refugees with temporary protection
A total of 104,235 Ukrainian refugees are currently in Bulgaria, announced the chairwoman of the State Agency for Refugees Mariana Tosheva. Almost all of them, or 102,522 people, are registered under temporary protection whereby they are granted health insurance and can legally look for work. "There is no other European country that currently has so many people who have received this type of protection," Tosheva explained.
Exports up 34% in the third quarter of 2022, reaching 21 billion levs
Bulgarian exports reached nearly 21 billion levs in the first quarter of the year, increasing by 34% for the same period year-on-year, shows data from NSI. Nominally, exports in January-March were up 48% compared to pre-crisis 2019. However, it should be noted that the figures show the monetary value of Bulgarian products sold abroad, not their quantity, so the growth is partly due to higher prices.