Bulgaria: State of Emergency extended until 31 January 2021

Bulgaria: State of Emergency extended until 31 January 2021

“Social distancing or quarantine are the only measures with proven effect against COVID-19. We are introducing measures for 3 weeks to alleviate hospitals on the brink of a breakdown”, said Bulgarian PM Boyko Borissov during a regular cabinet meeting.

During the meeting, the Council of Ministers voted to extend the state of emergency due to the pandemic from December 1 to January 31, 2021. The specific parameters of the provisional measures against the epidemic shall be be determined on the basis of the decision of the Council of Ministers by order of the Minister of Health, as reported by the government press service.

The Prime Minister of Bulgaria recalled that so far the country is following the most liberal regime to limit the spread of the coronavirus, in an effort to maintain economic activities. Borissov stressed that, in order to fight the disease, Bulgaria is participating equally with the other Member States in the joint supply of vaccines to the EU. “This will be the only thing that will allow the European Union as a whole to function properly”, Said Borissov.

“I want people to understand very clearly that in 3 weeks, on December 21, we will have the opportunity to relax the measures; kindergartens, day cares and schools will reopen, shopping malls, restaurants and gyms will be resume business as usual”, said the Bulgarian Prime Minister. He added that as compensation for this period, the state will provide almost 400 million leva for companies with limited activity.

“We are in a difficult time when we all have to deal with something as familiar and unknown as the coronavirus pandemic. Why do I say together? Because we the politicians have to make difficult but wise decisions to persuade you to implement and execute them together”, Borissov told a cabinet meeting.

He expressed his belief that doctors and nurses, health workers, teachers, scientists, law enforcement, politicians, employees and retirees, young and old, all Bulgarians together as a society can deal with the pandemic. “We have already done that”, Borissov added.

The Prime Minister noted that there should be no contradiction between health care and the economy. “Because there is no prosperous economy with people who are sick or infected with COVID-19. But there is no health care system that can function without a strong economy. That is why we need a balance that will guide us through the second wave of the pandemic”, said Boyko Borissov. /ibna