Bulgarian PM: Measures against Covid-19 ‘timely and good’

Bulgaria has the lowest ratio of people with Covid-19 and third-lowest ratio of deaths from the disease, and this is an indication of how timely and good the country’s measures against the spread of the virus have been, Prime Minister Boiko Borissov told the National Assembly on April 28.

Borissov was citing figures from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, which show Bulgaria as having the lowest number of people ill from Covid-19 per 100 000 population and in third place after Slovakia and Latvia in the number of deaths per 100 000 population.

He was addressing a special sitting called at the request of the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party on the government’s measures regarding the Covid-19 crisis. A previous special sitting on the topic, that had been scheduled for April 21, was cancelled after Borissov’s GERB party denied it a quorum.

Borissov said that Bulgaria’s measures to curb the spread of coronavirus were relatively liberal.

This was in contrast to neighbouring countries that had introduced curfews, while in Bulgaria, the construction sector, shops and houses of worship were allowed to keep their doors open.

Bulgaria had enough personal protective equipment and tests for Covid-19 and industry had been reorganised very quickly to meet the needs, Borissov said.

He thanked those in the front line in the fight against coronavirus.

Photo: parliament.bg

“Our measures are fully in line with the recommendations of the World Health Organization, every day all media can receive as many answers as they want publicly,” Borissov said.

The BSP’s Dragomir Stoynev: “What you are offering right now does not live up to the expectations of Bulgarian citizens. These measures do not work. Do you have an economic plan for getting out of the crisis? “

Borissov said that it was expected that by the end of the month more than 120 000 jobs would be maintained through the 60:40 measure, whereby the state pays 60 per cent of payroll costs of employers in certain identified sectors, while the employers must pay the other 40 per cent..

“We currently have 7403 applications submitted, 101 849 employees have benefited from it. Between 7000 and 10 000 workers retain their jobs every day. At this rate, we will retain over 120 000 jobs by the end of the month. and the big, in a sense, concern is how we will handle the tourism sector, because there is no prescription in the world yet,” he said.

Borissov said that many sectors in Bulgaria continued to operate – agriculture, construction, IT. Motor vehicle factories around the world are expected to start operating next month, he said.

BSP leader Kornelia Ninova said that the government had no plan to deal with the crisis, everyone was scared and while leaders of other European countries long since had implemented plans to help the economy and individuals, in Bulgaria only loans were offered to businesses and people.

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The Sofia Globe staff

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