Bulgaria eyes euro ‘waiting room’ within a year: PM

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said he is "optimistic" about his country's efforts to join the euro

Sofia (AFP) – Bulgaria, the European Union’s poorest country, hopes to enter the two-year “waiting room” to join the euro within a year, Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said Thursday.

“I am optimistic that within a year we can congratulate ourselves with success,” Borisov said Thursday.

The finance ministry is currently in talks with the European Commission and hopes to submit its documents and receive a road map “within a month”, he said.

Speaking at a separate forum in Sofia, European Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis said that Bulgaria’s timeline is “realistic”.

Finance Minister Vladislav Goranov said that with has one of the lowest debt levels in the EU, fiscal surpluses and manageable inflation, Bulgaria meets all the criteria for joining the euro.

“To receive a refusal by our European partners would be hypocritical and unfair,” he said.

The European Commission and the European Central Bank are due to publish their convergence report on Bulgaria on May 23.