Polish, Bulgarian PMs discuss EU presidency, Schengen

08:25, May 20, 2011      

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Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk and his visiting Bulgarian counterpart Boyko Borisov met in the Polish sea resort of Sopot on Thursday in a move to seek mutual support for each other country's top political and economic priorities.

Borisov's visit is part of Tusk's consultations with EU partners prior to Poland taking over the presidency of the EU Council in the latter part of this year, according to spokesperson for the Polish presidency Konrad Niklewicz.

Niklewicz said that the two discussed priorities of the Polish presidency of the European Union Council and especially the EU enlargement, Eastern Partnership, EU multi-year financial perspective and the situation in North Africa and the Schengen Zone.

"Poland wants to gain Bulgaria's support for priorities of the Polish presidency including the Eastern Partnership program and the European neighborhood policy as well as economic issues including the EU multi-year financial perspective and common agricultural policy," Niklewicz said, quoted by the PAP news agency.

Poland that will take over the EU six-month presidency will be the first to start talks on the EU future budget. The discussion will later be continued by Denmark and Cyprus that will preside over the EU council after Poland.

Niklewicz added that Tusk-Borisov talks covered Bulgaria's aspirations to obtain the membership of the Schengen zone. " Bulgaria wants to join the Schengen zone still in 2011 and this is the country's main political priority. Borisov's government expects Poland to endorse its aspirations," he stressed.

Tusk said in Sofia in October 2010 that Bulgaria makes quick progress on its way to the Schengen zone and announced Poland's support for its striving.

Niklewicz said that Poland and Bulgaria are interested in EU enlargement. "Poland and Bulgaria want Croatia to join the EU quickly and support Serbia's and Montenegro's EU bids," he added.

Tusk and Borisov also discussed the question of acquiring EU funds. According to the Polish government information office (CIR), Poland is the leader in the EU funds acquisition outdoing such countries as Spain and Germany.

CIR stressed that EU funds are a substantial element of anti- crisis actions. The share in the Polish GDP in 2010 accounted for 0.7 percent.

Source: Xinhua
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