13 Mar Bulgaria in formal state of emergency for one month from 13 March to 13 April 2020
On 13 March 2020 the Bulgarian Parliament proclaimed state of emergency for a period of one month in response to the expanding COVID-19 epidemic in the country. By doing so it empowers the government to act faster in mitigating the risk of overload of the healthcare system by waiving certain coordination procedures.
The government is expected to announce the specific measures to be imposed within the coming days. They are likely to include prolongation of current measure to close kindergartens, schools and universities, travel ban and restriction of the commute by organizing home office where possible.
While the borders of Bulgaria might be closed in coordination with the European Union authorities there is likely to be an exception for cargo to ensure the continuous supply of food, medicines, etc. Social and economic measures to mitigate the impact of this health crisis on the entrepreneurs and employers are also being discussed.
In the state of emergency all people within Bulgaria are required to comply with the measures imposed by the government to deal with the COVID-19 crisis. Non-compliance is to be punished with up to 1 year in prison according to the Criminal Code.