Bilateral framework agreement between Bulgaria and Switzerland signed

The president of the Swiss Confederation, Doris Leuthard, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Micheline Calmy-Rey and the Bulgarian Minister for EU Funds Management Tomislav Donchev signed a bilateral framework agreement on September 7. CHF 76 millions will be allocated until December 2014 to programmes and projects in Bulgaria. Payments will be made over a period of ten years until 2019 and adequate measures to fight abuse and corruption will be part of the projects and programmes. Switzerland will make the final decision about the financing of a project or programme; it is also Switzerland’s responsibility to closely monitor the implementation. First projects will presumably be selected and launched as of December 2010. The areas cover topics such as security and reforms, support of the civil society, integrating minorities, environment and infrastructure, promotion of the private sector, research and education as well as supporting institutional partnerships. This commitment by Switzerland represents a symbol of solidarity which, at the same time, will allow Switzerland and Bulgaria to build the foundation for solid economic and political relations.

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