site.btaBulgaria Will Strive to Catch Up to 70% of Average European Salary Levels in Next 4-5 years, Says Finance Minister
Finance Minister Assent Vassilev took part in a round table with the European Commissioner for Economy Paolo Gentiloni and representatives of leading companies in Bulgaria, the Ministry of Finance said.
"Bulgaria has been doing very well over the last 15-20 years in various areas, we have managed to keep the deficit at relatively low levels. In the next four-five years, Bulgaria will strive to catch up with salary levels and be able to reach 70% of the European average payment standard,” said Vassilev.
He pointed out that in order to increase labour wages, businesses must make appropriate capital investments that will lead to an increase in productivity. The National Plan for Recovery and Resilience also provides an opportunity for this.
The Finance Minister also commented on Bulgaria’s preparation for membership in the Eurozone. He stressed that a deficit of 3% of GDP is set in the budget for 2024, which is within the Maastricht criteria. Efforts are being made to achieve the inflation criterion, which is also key for acceptance into the Eurozone, he noted.
During the meeting, European Commissioner Gentiloni confirmed the European Commission's support for Bulgaria's Schengen membership, the Ministry of Finance also stated. He encouraged the country's efforts to meet the criteria for joining the Eurozone. Bulgaria is in a good position regarding the fulfillment of three of the four criteria. The price stability criterion related to inflation will also be analyzed in the spring, the EU Commissioner pointed out.
More than 30 representatives of some of the largest companies in Bulgaria participated in the meeting. A number of topics were discussed with the European Commissioner and the Bulgarian Minister of Finance, including strategic risks to the economy of both the Eurozone and the EU as a whole, the competitiveness of the European economy and energy prices. The meeting was organized by the Bulgarian Business Leaders Forums and the Bulgarian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association, together with the Ministry of Finance.