Fixed Income Analysis /
Bulgaria

Bulgaria: President schedules snap general election for 2 April

  • New early election to be fifth consecutive in past two years, domestic political instability to continue, in our view

  • President to dissolve parliament on 3 February, says that anti-corruption law has to be adopted by then

  • Incumbent caretaker PM Gulub Donev to continue his office in next caretaker government

EmergingMarketWatch
25 January 2023
  • New early election to be fifth consecutive in past two years, domestic political instability to continue, in our view
  • President to dissolve parliament on Feb 3, says that anti-corruption law has to be adopted by then, but we think that parties might not unite to vote it
  • Incumbent caretaker PM Gulub Donev to continue his office in next caretaker government

The snap general election will take place on Apr 2, President Rumen Radev announced, explaining that Mar 26 was not an appropriate date due to the daylight-saving time change and the difficulties with the securing of paper for machine voting. The President met representatives of the central election commission, who told him that the elections cannot be organised earlier than on Apr 2. This will be the fifth consecutive parliamentary election for the past two years, which will further postpone the resolution of the domestic political instability. We note that the latest polls from December and January showed that new elections will repeat the results of the Oct 2 general election, leading to a fragmented parliament, which indicates a very likely prolongation of the domestic political crisis in 2023 as well.

The President will dissolve the parliament on Feb 3, which gives the MPs one week and a half to adopt necessary legislative bills in regards to the national recovery plan, Radev said. He named two priorities - the reform in the anti-corruption commission and the introduction of a mechanism for investigation of the chief prosecutor, as the most important law amendments to be adopted. We remain sceptic that the parties will find agreement to vote in favour of these reforms, taking into account that GERB, MRF, and Vuzrazhdane will most likely vote against. We doubt whether BSP and Bulgarian Progress would support the bills either.

The President will have to appoint a new caretaker government, but he recently said that the incumbent PM Gulub Donev will keep his position. Radev refused to comment whether there will be changes of ministers in the next interim cabinet.