EC Follows with Concern Situation with Bulgarian-Greek Border Blockade

EC Follows with Concern Situation with Bulgarian-Greek Border Blockade

Brussels, February 12 (BTA correspondent Nickolay Jeliazkov) - The European Commission (EC) is following the developments regarding the blockade on the Greek-Bulgarian border closely and with concern, considering the risk of disruption to the free movement of goods, the EC Spokesperson for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, Lucia Caudet, told the press here Friday.

She said that the Bulgarian and Greek authorities have sent notifications to the EC within the context of the so called Strawberry Regulation. Under this regulation, whenever a potential obstacle to the free movement of goods occurs, the member states are required to notify the EC about the state of play and the measures they indend to take to remedy the situation.

"The Greek authorities have indeed been sharing daily updates on the situation but it has been sending updates mainly on the actual state of play, and we also need information on the measures that Greece is taking to secure the free movement of goods," said Caudet.

On February 10 the EC sent a letter to that effect to the Greece authorities, she added.

She specified that the actual enforcement of EC rules in this area is the responsibility of the member states.

"We trust that dilogue between the various parties involved will help avoid long-term disruption to traffic and potential resulting economic losses," Caudet added.

On Tuesday the Bulgarian Transport, IT and Communications Minister Ivailo Moskovski sent an official letter to EU Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc in which he expressed Bulgaria's concern over the lengthy delays of lorries at the border checkpoints between Bulgaria and Greece. EU Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos, who paid a visit here on Thursday, said that the EU has appropriate mechanisms to intervene if necessary.

Source: Brussels