German government vows fair treatment of Bulgarias bid for eurozone.

By bne IntelliNews January 26, 2010
German Chancellor Angela Merkel declared that the government will insist on fair treatment of Bulgaria s bid to join the eurozone. Merkel received PM Boyko Borisov in Berlin on Monday (Jan 25). Bulgaria announced plans to begin the process for adopting the single currency. Finance minister Simeon Dyankov said that the application for the exchange rate mechanism (ERM II), which is the first step in the process,  will be submitted by the end of the Spanish EU Presidency. The country has chances to meet the Maastricht criteria for entering the monetary union after the recession last year brought down the double digit inflation rate to an average of 2.8% in 2009. It is widely speculated, however, that problems with public finances in eurozone member Greece might jeopardize the Bulgarian application. Merkel reminded that it was for the ECB to decide whether the country meets the criteria to integrate in the European Monetary Union. In a related note, the Chancellor also highlighted that Germany will continue to support the reform of the judiciary and the fight against organised crime and corruption in Bulgaria with a view to the countrys aspirations to join the Schengen area.      

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