site.btaForeign Policy Committee Accepts Draft Resolution on French Proposal
The parliamentary Foreign Policy Committee on Thursday accepted one of three draft resolutions concerning what has come to be referred to as the French proposal for unlocking the stalemate between Sofia and Skopje regarding the start of EU accession talks with North Macedonia. The accepted draft, sponsored by Democratic Bulgaria, calls on Parliament to instruct the government to approve the French EU Presidency's proposal to lift the Bulgarian veto on the start of EU membership talks with North Macedonia. However, the document explicitly states that the content of the French proposal needs elaborating and improving in favour of the Bulgarian national interest.
The issue is expected to be proposed for discussion in plenary on Friday.
The other two draft resolutions had been submitted, respectively, by GERB-UDF and the Movement for Rights and Freedoms. Passage of an approval resolution will oblige the Council of Ministers to approve in turn the French proposal.
The Foreign Policy Committee heard out outgoing Foreign Minister Teodora Genchovska on the matter. She said that her ministry was not familiar with the submitted draft resolutions.
Genchovska said that at the request of the head of the Committee, a letter was sent last Thursday with a report on what was done by the Foreign Ministry, including talks not only with the French EU Presidency, but also with other EU member states. The draft memorandum with an accompanying explanatory letter of its pros and cons was also sent to the Committee on Monday, along with a 15-page report, Genchovska explained. "To date, there is nothing more to add to the report we have provided," she said.
At the hearing by the Committee Genchovska said that she could not say whether the French proposal will still be on the table after the Czech Republic takes over the rotating EU Presidency from France after June. "I cannot predict what the Czech EU Presidency may propose in this regard," she said, noting that the French proposal is incomparably better than previous proposals for monitoring the implementation of Bulgarian requirements.