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PM Denkov: European Central Bank President Told Me Inflation Is Bulgaria’s Only Issue on Way to Eurozone Accession

The only thing holding Bulgaria back for the eurozone is higher inflation, said Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov on Wednesday in a Q&A session with members of the public on Facebook on the occasion of his cabinet’s seventh month in office.

“A few days ago, I had the opportunity to meet with the European Central Bank President and she told me that inflation is the only thing we need to work on. We are discussing with the Finance Minister what more we could do to bring inflation down faster. Part of our inflation comes from higher incomes in recent years, which are higher than inflation, but also because of the catch-up we have experienced and the higher growth, which was one of the highest in the EU last year,” Denkov explained.

“This year alone, the 20% increase in the minimum wage inevitably raises other wages. When we raise the minimum wage, we reduce inequality, and this is one of the biggest problems in the country,” the Prime Minister noted.

“My plan for this year, as we approach the end of the government programme for 2024, is to prepare a government programme for the coming years, until the end of the term in office, which will be exclusively focused on demographic problems, health, education,” he added. 

“We are no longer the country with the lowest labour costs, as with the rise in incomes we have overtaken Hungary and Bulgaria is now second to last,” Denkov pointed out.