"Economic Policy Review" Bulletin ISSN 1313 - 0544

09.07.2021

In recent months, legal professionals and Bulgarian society as a whole closely monitored the actions of the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) pertaining to the reorganization of the territorial location of the courts in the Republic of Bulgaria publicity recognized as a “judicial map reform”. On this occasion, we present the second part of IME Legal Program’s analysis: “The Judicial Map – Effects of the Application of Model 4 as Developed by the Supreme Judicial Council”.

Economic Analysis of Digital Markets Act

23.06.2021
In a new joint publication entitled Economic Analysis of Digital Markets Act, prepared by four think tanks: INESS (Slovakia), CETA (Czech Republic), IME (Bulgaria), and LFMI (Lithuania), we point out the shortcomings of the DMA and highlight the possible unintended consequences of this regulation. In addition, we also suggest a way to modify the proposed procedure for regulating internet companies.

The Spring Lockdown Did Not Lead to an Influx to The Public Employment Services

02.06.2021
The first two lockdowns, from spring and late autumn 2020, have a visible effect on the total number of the registered unemployed (see chart), as it is particularly clear for the time period between mid-March and late May. At the beginning of 2021, however, the new measures didn´t lead to a new rise of the unemployment, on the contrary - the first four months of the year follow the usual dynamics of the annual unemployment cycle, but from a higher starting point after the rapid growth in 2020. It is of interest to mention, that after the end of the Christmas holidays and vacations there is a slightly more significant increase in the number of unemployed compared to previous years.

Is it Time to Overreact to Vaccines?

Peter Ganev / 02.06.2021
In order to change the trajectory of vaccination, we need a political decision for bringing the vaccination as a total priority for these two months. Whether it will be with a carrot or a stick is a separate issue, but the responsibility is now with the caretaker government. Even the purely logistical issue requires more attention. On the one hand, it is important to have as many points of contact as possible - that is why GPs are important, on the other hand - the specifics of the vials and doses require some consolidation of the people in groups. These are not unsolvable problems if they are defined as a priority.

No Way for a Good “Bulgarian Development Bank”

Latchezar Bogdanov / 05.07.2021
The Minister of Economy reactivated the public debate with information about eight loans granted by the Bulgarian Development Bank totaling BGN 946 million. Their amount is large enough to have a macroeconomic dimension – it represents 2.6% of all loans to non-financial enterprises as of March 2021 and 3.5% of all loans over BGN 1 million. The resentment must catalyze courage for a change; otherwise the topic will sink into petty piquancy, a focus on the individuals, that are affected and candid economic populism.

The Poverty Persists, but the Structural Problems Remain

Adrian Nikolov / 02.06.2021
Despite the significant increase in the poverty line, the share of the population that remains below it is stable, which means that the policies that are reducing it at this stage are failing. In addition, the crisis years will in any case have a negative impact on the implementation of policies to combat poverty, integrate the labor market and improve the scope of the education system.