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The efforts to achieve convergence between the European regions must continue. We need a clear European perspective for the Western Balkans. This was a statement by the Deputy Prime Minister Tomislav Donchev in the European Parliament’s REGI Committee, where he presented the priorities of the Bulgarian Presidency and the vision for the debate on the future of Cohesion Policy.

Mr. Donchev analyzed the challenges ahead of the Union. He said that although Brexit would force Europe to achieve 'more with less', the debate on budgets, tools and programmes should not take place without setting up long-term goals ahead of the Union. According to him, the main task for Bulgaria in the next six months will be to steer a comprehensive debate on how to maintain EU’s key policies while responding to challenges. “If 10 years ago we were aiming to outrun our global competitors, now EU sometimes seems more like a headquarter for tackling emerging crisis.” Donchev said. “It is clear that we need to allocate funds to meet the new challenges but on the other hand we need to continue the convergence efforts between the European regions because the EU will only go stronger if we have the same standard of living for all citizens from Helsinki to Athens and from Lisbon to Varna.”

The full text of the presentation of Mr. Tomislav Donchev is available here: LINK

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