Today the Council of Ministers Granite Hall was the venue of the ceremony of the transfer of power. Statements were made by Galab Donev, head of the Caretaker Government, and Prime Minister Kiril Petkov.
Dear Prime Minister Petkov,
Dear colleagues, cabinet ministers,
An hour ago, we were sworn in and pledged allegiance to the Constitution and to the laws of the country as we vowed to be guided in all our actions by the interests of the nation. The oath is now binding on us. I wish you strength, courage and wisdom to defend Bulgaria’s national interest with each of your endorsements and decisions.
Stay at some distance from power so that you do not lose your connection with the people. Whenever you seek a solution to an existing problem, think of every individual who will have to deal with it and will count on the support of our State.
I will remind you that actually we ourselves are the State, which is usually spoken of as something beyond us. Here in this hall I will repeat that I expect from each of you 100% performance and smart decisions that are considerate of each Bulgarian citizen. Smart decisions that comply with the law and smart and efficient solutions that aim to improve people’s lives and that are not just another row of spectacular political messages. The months ahead will see turbulent political developments. In such a situation, the task of the Caretaker Government is to reestablish the good manner and the productive dialog in societal relations. I still have the hope that this will be achievable. How are we to proceed when this ceremony is closed? We will get familiar in detail with the legacy we get, the successes and what Prime Minister Petkov emphasized. Understandably, we must make our key priority the natural gas price, the fuel prices, the high inflation, the suspended repair works and the road maintenance in the country, the protest of the road construction companies and many other. However, I will stop here. I wish courage and success to each one of you! I thank you for your attention!
Dear Prime Minister,
Dear ministers, members of both cabinets,
On behalf of our coalition government, I am handing over to you the reins of power. First of all, I would like to note that, contrary to allegations made for the public, conditions for an apocalypse in Bulgaria are not in place. We have not laid any mines, traps or pitfalls to divert your attention from the preparation of fair early elections.
On the contrary, in the past weeks our government managed to build a new solid foundation despite the global economic crisis. With your help, Bulgarian citizens can have certainty and predictability in the coming months. We made sure that the households would get support for their heating in the winter. We made sure that people would not feel the rising electricity prices and we enforced ceiling electricity prices for the businesses. We extended the period of validity of the measure to reduce the price of a liter of fuel at the filling stations.
After a 12-year long standstill, within just seven months we have achieved real gas diversification, which will help you address more easily the consequences of the global energy crisis and the economic impacts of the war. When the gas Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria goes into operation in late September, people will feel a substantial price reduction. We have provided conditions for cheaper liquefied natural gas supplies in amounts that will be sufficient until the spring.
There would be no need for you to put out fires in the social system. For the first time we have pulled pensioners above the poverty line. We have provided tax breaks and benefits for families with children, funding for the renovation of schools and kindergartens; we have increased the salaries of the medics and the number of referrals for patients. We have increased the teachers’ salaries. We have allocated additional aid to vulnerable groups. We are leaving you a budget surplus of BGN 1.5 billion. The Treasury keeps more than BGN 8.5 billion. We have secured BGN 13 billion from the EU Recovery and Resilience Plan contingent on the enforcement of anticorruption legislation and measures. Yesterday Bulgaria signed an operational arrangements agreement with the European Commission. Thus, Bulgaria became the member state with the fastest negotiated and signed operational arrangements within the European Union. Though the Bulgarian Plan was the 24th approved plan, Bulgaria became the 15th country with an operational arrangements agreement and even this week you may send an invoice to the amount of € 2.6 billion.
I hope you will carry on our fight against corruption and the nonexistence of fair Judiciary that is to be held responsible for the billions worth assets of which the Bulgarian citizens are the rightful holders and which for ten years went to a select few. Speaking about corruption, I hope the new ministers would not forget that our government was brought down so quickly because it struck a blow on the scheme by which billions were embezzled from roadworks, border control and railway transport. For ten years, the money made rich some twenty select instead of being spent on children’s hospitals, family support and for all Bulgarians. This fight must continue. I wish you courage, willpower and success!