Programmes and Activities
Bulgaria is one of the countries in South East Europe, which is developing very slowly after the beginning of the transition in 1990. Bulgaria is poor in natural resources. The breakdown of the economic system led to a de-industrialization in the country, privatization of state companies is almost accomplished. The main obstacle for foreign investors is the heaviness of the Bulgarian bureaucracy.
A currency board was established in 1997 upon advice from the IMF. The result of restrictive fiscal policy was the improvement of macroeconomic stability at the expense of deteriorating social conditions and low standards of living.
Transition in the political sphere is not over either. Although a multi-party democracy was established after 1990, political actors, especially parties, are not consolidated yet. In Bulgaria an extremely rich, corrupt and criminal class has control over the economy and a strong influence on politicians. The rest of the population does not participate or is almost excluded from transition processes. There is a lack of active non-state actors and of a strong independent civil society. Only the work of trade unions has had some positive effects on the development and reform of labour relations.
There is a broad consensus on foreign policy of the country. Bulgaria became a member of NATO in 2002. The most important event in the field of the foreign policy of the country is the accession to the European Union in 2007. Ever since this mission has been accomplished, there is a lack of vision and of common political culture for the near future.
People are disappointed with politics, they do not believe in political parties and their promises, participation in election is decreasing. The young generation sees its future abroad.
By and large Bulgaria has established democratic institutions, consolidated macroeconomic indicators and successfully become a member of the EU. However, the country still has a long way to go putting real life into these institutions and continuing sustainable structural reforms. And it still has not found its place and role in the EU.
On the basis of the above political and social analysis of the country's framework conditions, the project defines its overall priorities (main objectives), develops respective working lines (project objectives) and translates these into the various concrete programmes and activities.
At present the project has the following main objectives:
- Strengthening institutions of democracy
- Developing current economic and social policies
- Stimulating decentralization and municipal development
- Supporting by the establishment of modern labour relations
- Motivating youth for active participation in the future development of Bulgaria
- Assisting Bulgaria in finding its position in Europe