Bulgaria: GERB wins Bulgarian election, but fails to earn majority
October 7, 2014
Bulgaria’s center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party (GERB) won the 5 October snap parliamentary election with 32.7% of the vote, according to preliminary results. However, GERB, led by Former Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, fell 31 seats short of a majority and will have to work with the other parties to form a government. The Bulgarian Socialist Party received the second largest share of the vote with 16.0%. Six other political parties received over 4% of the vote each, which is the minimum threshold to attain seats in parliament. The fragmented parliament could result in another shaky coalition government and bodes for more political uncertainty in Bulgaria.
October’s election was the second in two years following Prime Minister Plamen Oresharki’s resignation on 23 July in the wake of Bulgaria’s worst banking crisis in over a decade. The new government—assuming it can be formed—will have to resolve a series of issues that Oresharki left behind, mainly those concerning Bulgaria’s dire financial situation. The country’s economy has stagnated and customers of the country’s fourth-largest bank, which is under investigation, have been unable to access their funds since June.
Whether Borisov will be successful in forming an effective government remains to be seen. Under this uncertainty, FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect GDP to expand 1.6% in 2014, which is unchanged from last month’s Consensus. In 2015, panelists see the economy growing 2.2%.