Negotiations between GERB-UDF and We Continue the Change-Democratic Bulgaria continue

Negotiations between GERB-UDF and We Continue the Change-Democratic Bulgaria on a government are continuing, GERB-UDF’s Prime Minister candidate Maria Gabriel said on March 18.

Gabriel was speaking to reporters after accepting a mandate to seek to form a government.

This was the latest development in the intended “rotation” from a government headed by WCC-DB’ss Nikolai Denkov to one headed by Gabriel.

Steps towards the “rotation” have been complicated by tensions between the two coalitions.

The mandate-handing ceremony was slightly delayed as the two coalition struggled to reach agreement.

Gabriel told reporters: “We need another 24 hours to finalise the agreement. It is important that everything is spoken, because it is important to say that we are together because we share common principles”.

According to GERB-UDF, Gabriel will meet President Roumen Radev on March 19 to announce a final decision whether or not to proceed with the nomination of a government.

The constitution gives the holder of the first mandate a period of seven days to fulfil it or return it unfulfilled, but Gabriel said: “Seven days is a deadline that I do not accept”.

She said that there were no contradictions between the negotiating parties regarding priorities – the judicial system, the regulators and the fight against corruption.

While there were no differences on priorities, they went hand in hand with the line-up of the Cabinet, she said.

Denkov, who accompanied Gabriel to the mandate-handing and in speaking to the media, said that it was only on March 18 that WCC-DB saw GERB-UDF’s proposed list of ministers,and WCC-DB found the list unacceptable.

“Until yesterday we had no clarity whether the agreement would be signed or not, until yesterday we were told that it would not be signed. We have already agreed that this agreement will be signed,” he said.

“If necessary, we will further refine the texts and we can look at the composition of the Cabinet. It is our understanding that they should be signed together. In the morning, what was presented as a draft composition, we see it for the first time, in this form is unacceptable to us. We are yet to discuss the composition.

“Once the negotiations are complete, when there is a general agreement, then Maria Gabriel and I can tell you what can be accepted by both sides,” Denkov said.

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