Bulgaria. Bulgaria continued its laborious efforts to modernize the disadvantaged economy, and some successes could be discerned. The currency (forint) had stabilized, inflation was close to zero, banks began to lend money again and the privatization of state-owned enterprises continued. Corruption, which has long poisoned the business climate, also showed signs of diminishing.
Visit Countryaah official website to get information about the capital city of Bulgaria. NATO’s war against Yugoslavia was both to the advantage and disadvantage of Bulgaria. The advantage was that Bulgaria won political points in the West when President Petar Stojanov and Prime Minister Ivan Kostov decided to open air corridors for the NATO bombing despite the opinion of the majority of the population against it. The reward also came after the end of the war in the form of aid and favorable loan terms from the IMF (International Monetary Fund), and the EU. Bulgaria also became a candidate country for the EU at the end of the year at the European Union summit in Helsinki. The question is whether this compensated for the losses suffered by Bulgarian exports as a result of the war. A large part of Bulgaria’s exports goes to Serbia and is transported on the Danube River, which was blocked when NATO bombed Yugoslavia’s bridges.
The popular resistance to NATO bombing is not because the Bulgarians are particularly Serbian-friendly, but because they feel an almost romantic love for Macedonia, even if you make sure that you have no territorial demands on the small neighboring country. Bulgaria sent 150 old tanks to Macedonia shortly before the war against Yugoslavia, which caused irritation in Belgrade.
Bulgaria strives to join NATO and the EU. A small step on that path was taken when the Bulgarian government agreed in the autumn to begin negotiations with the EU to close the age-old Kozloduj power plant, whose European Union reactors do not comply with international safety regulations. Bulgaria has refused to implement the shutdown plan concluded with the EU in 1993, according to which four of the six reactors in Kozloduj, 20 km north of Sofia, would have been closed at year-end 1998/99. The head of the State Energy Commission, Ivan Shileshky, declared in the spring that the four reactors will not be closed until early 2012.
Bulgaria did away with the marble mausoleum in central Sofia in the late summer that formerly contained the Bulgarian Communist State’s founder Georgij Dimitrov’s dust, which was removed and cremated as early as 1990, shortly after the fall of communism.