The President of the European People’s Party (EPP), Joseph Daul, warmly welcomes the start of the first Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) under the leadership of Prime Minister Boyko Borissov:

“Every European citizen must feel safe at home and confident for the future. And the Bulgarian EU Presidency focuses on making better tomorrows for the European people. The security of the European citizens is our first priority. Under the Bulgarian Presidency, European Defence will enter a new era with the implementation of Permanent Structured Cooperation.

As the EU’s economy are growing, now it is the time to plan for future challenges. This is exactly why the Bulgarian EU Presidency will put all its efforts on youth, social cohesion, digital economy and skills for the future. Investing in young people is the best investment we can make for our future. It is why Bulgaria will prepare the groundwork for the next Multiannual Financial Framework and do everything in its power prepare the workforce to the challenges of digital societies. We see digitalisation as a major driver for economic growth and job creation but we must initiate a significant process of adaptation.”

Bulgaria will also put the European perspective for the Western Balkans and the connectivity of the region on top of the agenda. We could not agree more. Supporting peace and prosperity in the Balkans is beneficial for both the people in the region and the Europeans. And we need to work together. But the countries in the region must also carry on with their efforts to implement the rule of law, fighting against corruption and reforming the judiciary; this is the precondition for economic development.

I wish Bulgaria a lot of success for their Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Knowing the determination and European commitment of Prime Minister Boyko Borrisov, I am convinced that next six months will bring numerous results.”