To meet the criteria for entering the Eurozone, Bulgaria is gearing up for a significant shift in its economic landscape, with prices expected to witness a downward trend in the coming months, OFFNews reports.

The key condition for Bulgaria’s entry into the Eurozone is maintaining inflation within a specific range. Specifically, the inflation rate in Bulgaria’s consumer basket must not exceed 1.5 percentage points higher than the average inflation rate of the three Eurozone countries with the best indicators.

Political consensus among parties favoring Eurozone adoption is evident, with concerted efforts underway to meet the inflation criterion. One notable measure in this regard is the potential elimination of student fees for higher education institutions, which could contribute to lowering inflation by approximately 0.7%.

Data from the National Statistical Institute (NSI) highlights a significant increase in spending in the communications sector in 2023, prompting initiatives to curb mobile service prices. Recent discussions led by the Consumer Protection Commission signal a tightening regulatory stance against illegal price hikes by mobile operators.

Addressing another contributor to inflation, the Minister of Agriculture, Kiril Vatev, has announced a 20% reduction in firewood prices through direct sales by State Forestry and Hunting Farms.

The timing of Bulgaria’s readiness assessment for Eurozone adoption remains uncertain, with the examination report initially slated for May but now possibly postponed to June or September. Achieving sustained low inflation is crucial, as it is a key criterion for acceptance into the Eurozone.

While Bulgaria meets one criterion related to state debt, efforts are ongoing to ensure compliance with the budget deficit criterion, with projections indicating a deficit of 2.5% in 2024.

However, challenges persist, particularly concerning the methodology for calculating inflation, which may undergo further scrutiny. With prices falling in many Eurozone countries, Bulgaria faces the task of aligning its inflation rate with the lowest performers to enhance its prospects of Eurozone entry.