Migration, Corruption, Cybersecurity Are Among Key Challenges in Updated National Security Strategy

Migration, Corruption, Cybersecurity Are Among Key Challenges in Updated National Security Strategy

Sofia, March 14 (BTA) - Migration pressure, corruption and cybersecurity are among the key challenges in an update of the national security strategy that was approved by Parliament Wednesday. The updated strategy was passed on 118-4 votes with 35 abstentions. The economic aspects of security are also in the highlights of the strategy.

Prepared by the government, the document has a time horizon until 2025.

New policies are added including transport security, crisis management, youth and sport and protection of the national archives as a part of the cultural and historic heritage.

The document provides for phased increase of the defence budget to 2 per cent of GDP, as well as for acquisition of new combat platforms and general modernization of the armed forces.

Migration is turning into an aggravating long-term issue and if it is not managed well, it threatens to turn into a strategic risk to the democratic societies and economies in the transition and receiving countries, says the strategy. It points out that the situation in the Middle East, Central Asia and Africa threatens to further increase the migration pressure and put to risk security in Europe, Bulgaria included.

The document dwells on the Bulgarian communities abroad and the Bulgarian national minorities in the countries where they are recognized as having this statute, and says that they need the Bulgarian State to pay them greater attention adequately to the present-day reality.

According to the strategy, corruption and especially high-level corruption remain one of the key issues in the Bulgarian society. It says that corruption is involved in intransparent change of property and is caused, among other things, by inadequate regulation of social and economic relations, and inefficient law-enforcement and justice. A newly established anti-corruption authority is one of the tools to change the situation, the document says.

Modernizing all levels of education is a key prerequisite for improving social security in the country and the document underscores the importance of equal access to quality education, minimizing illiteracy and preventing early school dropouts.

The strategy further says that Bulgaria stands by its commitment under the applicable EU directive for establishing and designating critical infrastructures and assessing the need to improve their protection.

It also says that the national policy for crisis management is a responsibility of the government and is based on permanent monitoring of potential and evolving crises.

The opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party for Bulgaria slammed the strategy update and said most of it was a chaotic compilation of policies.

They insisted that the documents should provide against the militarization of the Black Sea but the motion was rejected by the majority.

Movement for Rights and Freedoms leader Mustafa Karadaya recalled that the document is the product of a consensus reached at a National Security Consultative Council last year. He said that as soon as the strategy update is adopted, preparation needs to start for writing a new one as the risks change quickly.

Source: Sofia