Bulgarian Socialists win, but no majority

Mon 27 Jun 2005

Bulgarian Socialists win, but no majority

The Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP)- lead Coalition for Bulgaria won the parliamentary elections but with less than expected. The Coalition is far from being able to form a cabinet on its own.

On 29 June the state Central Elections Commission (CEC) presented the final results of Bulgaria's general election. Coalition for Bulgaria has been backed by 34.17% of votes and receives a total of 82 seats in the 240-seat Assembly. Simeon II National Movement (NDSV) is the second political force in parliament with 53 mandates, nearly double less than it had in the previous assembly. The party, which played solo at this year's elections, garnered 22.08% of votes. The ethnic Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS), which was the junior partner in the NDSV government, ranked third with the support of 14.17% thus winning 34 MPs in the next assembly. The surprise in the 2005 elections in Bulgaria nationalist coalition Attack (Ataka) garnered a vote of 8.75% and will have 21 MPs in the parliament. United Democratic Forces (ODS), which was supported by 8.33% of the voters, swept 20 seats in the next Parliament. The other rightist party Democrats for Strong Bulgaria (DSB), headed by ex prime minister Ivan Kosotv, will have 17 seats as its was backed by 7.08% of the Bulgarians. The Bulgarian People's Union (BNS) will be presented by 13 MPs in the next Bulgarian Parliament. It received 5.42% of the votes in the June 25 general elections in the country. The left-wing Coalition for the Rose lead by a former Socialist vice-prime minister, Alexander Tomov, did not pass the 4% threshold.

BSP leader Sergey Stanishev declared willingness to form a stable coalition government in order to finish the last reforms necessary for EU-entry in 2007. To this end, the BSP negotiates with the NDSV and the DPS to form to a tripartisan government. It is not clear who will be the prime minister in such a case. There is time pressure, because important reforms are still needed in order for Bulgaria to become EU member in 2007. President Georgi Parvanov called the new parliament on 11 July. The National Assembly will work during the usual summer recess to catch up with required legislation.