President Rumen Radev held a meeting with the Executive Officers of the Bulgarian Development Bank Mr. Nikolay Dimitrov and Mr. Panayot Filipov at the Presidency to discuss the Bulgarian hosting of the Three Seas Initiative to improve regional transport, energy and digital connectivity. At the end of last year, the Bulgarian Development Bank joined the Initiative Investment Fund as a Class A shareholder with a commitment of BGN 20 million.

Bulgaria, along with the other countries, will continue to develop mechanisms to improve the decision-making process within the Three Seas Initiative, Mr. Rumen Radev emphasized during the meeting. The Head of State defined raising awareness regarding the criteria for determining the winning projects, as well as the mechanisms for granting funding as the major challenges. The President explained that the real opportunities of the Investment Fund would depend on the inclusion of the undecided parties under the Initiative, as well as on international financial institutions and on representatives of the private sector.

The Executive Officers highlighted the readiness of the Bulgarian Development Bank to be a partner within the Three Seas Initiative. They stated that, thus far, they had been restraining from participating in the Initiative due to the previous absence of a political decision to join the Investment Fund, which was indeed taken in September 2020. The Bank is expected to have an established representation to the Management Board and the Supervisory Board of the Investment Fund which will contribute to the integral participation of the state of Bulgaria by the end of this month.

Mr. Rumen Radev pointed out that Bulgaria expects the Three Seas Initiative to turn into a real tool for social and economic cohesion in Europe in order to compensate the differences in the development of the different regions in the EU.