The Institute for Market Economics (founded 1993) is the oldest free-market think tank in Bulgaria. While we have heralded the positive effect of Bulgaria being a member of the EU for more than 10 years now, we have also been increasingly concerned about some initiatives that aim to shift the Union away from its founding principles. Such is the case with the proposal to “explore how EU decision-making on certain tax issues could be streamlined by removing the need for unanimous agreement by all countries”. Here we present our arguments why we strongly oppose this proposal. All quotations are taken from the Roadmap published by the European Commission.
IME response to the Roadmap for more efficient law-making in the field of taxation
Support the 2018 "Europe & Liberty" Seminar in Bansko, Bulgaria
The summer seminar "Europe & Liberty", organised by the Institute for Market Economics (IME) and Institute for Economic Studies (IES - Europe) has been hugely successful in last seven years (2011-2017). Due to some funding issues, we invite you to support our initiative in 2018. The IME will host both a crowdfunding campaign and a direct fundraising campaign focused on IME donors and alumni of the seminar. The goal of the campaign is to fund participant costs - the seminar is completely free for those who take part in it.
The Economic Centres of Bulgaria
The grouping within the centres was done around the economic cores, which gather significant daily labour migration from surrounding municipalities, have significant concentration of employed people and generate relatively large production.
IME REPORT: AFFORDABILITY OF CIGARETTES IN BULGARIA IS IMPROVING, BUT STILL 1.6-1.7 TIMES LOWER THAT THE EU AVERAGE
The Institute for Market Economic (IME) published a detailed analysis of price elasticity of tobacco product in Bulgaria and examination of affordability issues in respect to EU harmonization policy on excise duties. The report is part of IME initiative “By the book”*, which aims to study possible improvements in current policy and the ways to overcome institutional weaknesses which allow for illicit trade of tobacco products. The report covers the full period 2007-2018 and provides commentary on the recent public consultation on EU excise policy towards tobacco products.
The fictitious "real convergence" criterion for the euro area
Even if there were an informal criterion for real convergence of incomes to the EU average, then Bulgaria would have fulfilled it. This is clearly evident from the decision to admit the three Baltic States to ERM II at income levels that had been lower or similar to those of Bulgaria at the moment. The other possible explanation lies in the domain of political hypocrisy and the use of euphemisms behind which European politicians (like most politicians) usually hide. Which of the two explanations is relevant to the case will be seen pretty soon if the Bulgarian Finance Minister fulfills his promise and files an application for euro adoption by June this year.