These were the third parliamentary elections of 2021, the previous ones in April and July having failed to form a government. A presidential election was also held but neither candidate secured a majority. Incumbent President Radev gathered 49% of the vote which meant that he would face a second round on 21st November 2021 against the university professor Gerdzhikov.
In terms of the National Assembly vote, Kiril Petkov’s centrist ‘PP’ (Prodalzhavame Promyanata) party, which means ‘We Continue the Change’ in English, took the lead with more than 25%. Petkov declared he would seek the role of Prime Minister and outlined a more progressive and pragmatic vision for Bulgaria. It has pushed the formerly dominant centre right GERB party into second place and shifted the political landscape slightly to the left. Former Prime Minister and GERB leader, Boyko Borisov, has been the most influential leader in Bulgaria for the last ten years but was tainted by allegations of corruption and links with various gangs. The PP party was established two months ago by two Harvard trained economists, Kiril Petkov and Asen Vasilev, both of whom have been leading members in the caretaker government for the past four months.
Sources and further reading:
Source: London School of Economics, 22.11.21
Further reading: Bulgaria’s Petkov coalition government: meet the ministers