Coalition BSP – Left-Wing Bulgaria has vowed in its election program to fight injustice committed by “the few percent” having most of the power.

Led by the BSP and including a number of smaller left-wing parties, the coalition calls on voters to give it support for the “radical change” it previously failed to carry out and for its mission to bring about “sustainable accelerated development” to Bulgaria.

The socialist will be seeking to remove corporate power from state and municipal institutions and to restore trust in politics.

Institutions in charge of revenues should for their part be able to withstand the common practice of employers to conceal the real value for employees’ salaries.

An economically active state should act not only as a regulator, but also as an owner and an investor, participating in key sectors to mitigate the negative social impact of market mechanism, socialist believe.

It should be up to the state to point out priorities of economic development, namely energy, agriculture and related processing industry, tourism, certain sectors of engineering, chemistry and information technologies, culture and creative industries. The state should also be responsible for erasing the inequalities between the different regions.

Unemployment, poverty and access to heathcare should be addressed using the taxation system, more specifically introducing progressive taxation.

Enterprises enjoying a dominant position or a monopoly should undergo economic regulation, and Bulgarian producers should receive state support.

The Growth and Development program should be subject to improvements, since it is a key step to adopting a national program on ivestment which operates with Bulgarian (state) and European funding and also with money from commercial banks.

Legal changes should be prepared with regard to commercial banks and banking supervision to reduce the risk posed to depositors.

The activity of the Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) should be thoroughly reviewed to make sure it is acting as a supporter of stability within the banking system. Competences of the Financial Supervision Commission should be given a boost and the institution should be entitled to control the application of rules on receiving and use of public funds from commercial banks.

Socialists argue Bulgaria will be able to cut unemployment by half within two full terms if it keeps to these prescriptions.

Minimum wages, pensions and social benefits should gradually increase in line with labor productivity and the real cost of living.

Efforts should be pursued to deepen the integration of ethnic communities (and mostly that of Roma people) to make sure they do not only ejnoy the benefits, but also carry out the obligations of every active Bulgarian citizens.

Bulgaria should also implement an active European policy while at the same time safeguarding its own national interests.

The party stresses it is categorically against any attempts to stir up divisions and confrontation between the EU and Russia, with further sanctions on Russia being rather undesirable.  

BSP’s “red lines”, described as “a prerequisite for participation in government”, include:

- Introduction of the progressive taxation system for both individuals and of family taxation.

- Increased state funding for education at state and municipal schools.

- A healthcare system which, involving a stronger commitment of the state, equals access to medical services across Bulgaria’s regions, introduces clear standard for medical activities and equal financial conditions for all types of hospitals.

- Pension reform under which decisions on retirement age are tied to life expectancy.

- Re-industrialization of Bulgaria creating the environment for new, modern production and restoring parts of enterprises of structural importance to the Bulgarian economy.

- Continuation of the South Stream pipeline project.

- Development of nuclear energy through:

     –  taking active measures for the construction of the Belene Nuclear Power Plant (NPP);

     -  extension of the exploitation deadline of Unit 5 and 6 of the Kozloduy NPP;

     -  continuation of capacity building at the Kozloduy NPP, but while defending national interests.

Along with that, the party would consent neither to the application of shale gas exploration and extraction technologies nor to those for coal gasification. No concessions would be made in the BSP’s position that Europe should not backtrack on social and ecological standards when discussing the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) with the US.

These red lines, the party’s program reads, reflect commitmets which could be fulfilled through cooperation with other parties.

The BSP has vowed to agree on its participation in a government coalition only if there are precise and publicly spoken out conditions.