Bulgarian Socialist Party government continues backtracking on election promises

A promise by the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP) government to increase the minimum wage has been postponed to 2014 while the administration also has pared back a socialist election promise of a uniform financial boost for all families with first-graders.

More than three months into its term in office, the BSP government has been failing to act on these and other promises made before the May 2013 ahead-of-term parliamentary elections.

The failure to keep the promise about all families with first-graders benefiting from 310 leva (about 155 euro), made in May by BSP leader Sergei Stanishev, was highlighted when the new school year in Bulgaria started on September 16.

Instead of this sum being available across the board, a total of the “most socially vulnerable families” got 250 leva each. This sum was handed as a one-off grant to the families of 39 000 first-graders, out of a total 64 000 first-graders.

This means spending of 9.75 million leva instead of 19.8 million leva. The backtrack had been telegraphed earlier, in June a few weeks after the government came to office.

Also on September 16, it became clear that the BSP government was giving up its previous plans to increase the minimum wage in 2013, with October having been named as the date.

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