Bulgaria’s PM nominee Petkov names proposed cabinet line-up

We Continue the Change (WCC) co-leader Kiril Petkov, the party’s prime minister nominee put forth after it won the November 2021 parliamentary elections, presented the proposed line-up of his Cabinet on December 11.

Earlier in the day, a WCC delegation received the formal mandate to form the government from President Roumen Radev and returned it with Petkov’s nomination as prime minister designate.

Radev handed the mandate a day after WCC signed a coalition agreement with three other parliamentary groups in the 47th National Assembly – Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), cable television presenter Slavi Trifonov’s ITN and the Democratic Bulgaria (DB) coalition.

Radev has already issued the decree formally asking Parliament to vote on Petkov’s nomination as prime minister, according to a notice posted on the presidency’s website.

Petkov repeatedly said that he expected Parliament to hold an investiture vote at a special sitting on December 13. A special sitting can be held if enough MPs sign a request to that end, but it must be called at least 24 hours in advance of the start of the sitting.

The proposed Cabinet line-up presented by Petkov features three members of the current caretaker Cabinet appointed by Radev in September, after the 46th National Assembly failed to vote a Cabinet.

Caretaker PM Stefan Yanev will stay on as Defence Minister, while Interior Minister Boiko Rashkov and Education Minister Nikolai Denkov will keep their existing portfolios.

Petkov and WCC co-leader Assen Vassilev were members of the caretaker Cabinet appointed by Radev in May, after elections for the 45th National Assembly, but departed in order to found WCC and take part in the November elections.

The line-up features five deputy prime ministers, more than recent previous Cabinets, and sees an increase in the number of portfolios, with newly-created ministries for e-government, as well as growth and innovation.

Petkov said on December 11 that the increase in the number of Cabinet ministers will not result in expanding the state administration, but will be accomplished by reshuffling existing state agencies and resources.

The coalition agreement signed by the four groups on December 10 stipulates the specific changes in the state administration.

The proposed line-up of the Cabinet to be voted by Parliament is as follows:

Prime Minister – Kiril Petkov (WCC)

Deputy PM and Finance Minister – Assen Vassilev (WCC)

Deputy PM for effective government – Kalina Konstantinova (WCC)

Deputy PM and Economy and Industry Minister – Kornelia Ninova (BSP)

Deputy PM and Regional Development Minister – Grozdan Karadjov (ITN)

Deputy PM and Environment and Waters Minister – Borislav Sandov (DB)

Interior Minister – Boiko Rashkov (WCC)

Foreign Minister – Teodora Genchovska (ITN)

Defence Minister – Stefan Yanev (WCC)

Justice Minister – Nadezhda Yordanova (DB)

Labour and Social Policy Minister – Georgi Gyokov (BSP)

Health Minister – Assena Serbezova (WCC)

Energy Minister – Alexander Nikolov (ITN)

Agriculture Minister – Ivan Ivanov (BSP)

Transport Minister – Nikolai Subev (WCC)

Growth and Innovation Minister – Daniel Lorer (WCC)

E-government Minister – Bozhidar Bozhanov (DB)

Education Minister – Nikolai Denkov (WCC)

Tourism Minister – Hristo Prodanov (BSP)

Culture Minister – Atanas Atanassov (WCC)

Sports Minister – Radostin Vassilev (ITN)

(Radev, right, and Petkov at the mandate-handing ceremony on December 11, 2021. Photo: president.bg)

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