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Bulgaria: Borissov announces mandatory use of mask in all open spaces, starting tomorrow

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov chaired a cabinet meeting today to discuss the coronavirus pandemic, pension support and other issues.

According to the Bulgarian Prime Minister, “societies around the world are divided and the percentage of those who do not believe that COVID-19 exists is increasing. At the same time, the number of infected people is also growing across Europe. Therefore, although they advocate for human health, they are questioning all measures to that direction”.

“The decision of the Ministry of Health for mandatory use of a mask outdoors will take effect tomorrow”, said Borissov. “I insist that every detail be described! It must be clearly explained to people that when a person walks alone on the street, rides a bicycle, walks in the park or is outdoors where there is no crowd, it is not necessary to wear a mask. If they want to, they may do so, but that will be a personal decision”, said the Bulgarian Prime Minister.

“Hospitals are currently overcrowded, COVID-19 patients are on the rise and medical staff are becoming infected. We also need to think about the doctors who are in the front line. Europe has introduced masks as compulsory, there are emergencies, schools, restaurants and facilities are closed. We want to save the lives of the medical staff, all front-line officers battling with COVID-19 and all the Bulgarian citizens, on the basis of conviction and strict control”, said the Bulgarian Prime Minister.

He announced that, starting today, the deliveries of the drug Remdesivir are ensured, which secures the treatment of patients with COVID-19 until the end of March 2021.

In addition, Boyko Borissov announced that “more than 2 million elderly people will receive an additional 50 leva in their pensions for the month of November. For this purpose, we will allocate about 106 million leva from the State Social Security budget. The extra amount will be paid to all retirees, regardless of the amount of their monthly salaries. We are already committed to maintaining the monthly supplement in pensions until March 2021 and we are fulfilling this promise of ours. At the same time, we propose that next year the minimum pension be 300 leva, while from July we will increase all pensions by 5%”.

He also announced that the cabinet would allocate 23m leva to improve the infrastructure of the Zlatarevo border checkpoint, the Kalotina border checkpoint and the Kulata border checkpoint. The aim is for the checkpoints to meet the necessary quality requirements and to facilitate the passage of people through them.

Another government decision provides the raise of the state-owned stake in Sofia Tech Park by more than BGN 20 million for the construction of a supercomputer.

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