Bulgaria will on April 2 hold its fifth general election in two years, the president announced Tuesday after the latest attempt to form a stable government collapsed.
“I will issue a decree to dissolve parliament on February 3 and I set parliamentary elections for April 2,” President Rumen Radev told journalists.
The last election in October produced a deeply fragmented parliament in the EU’s poorest country.
The two biggest parties — the conservative GERB and the anti-graft We Continue the Change (PP) — failed to garner enough support to form a working cabinet.
Radev then asked the Socialists, the party of his choice, to form a government. But their bid also ended in failure on Tuesday.
“The difficult political situation did not produce a solution again and we are heading for the next early parliamentary election,” Radev said.
The political hiatus is unprecedented in Bulgaria since the end of communism in 1989. For much of the last two years, interim governments have been in charge.
Political analysts say there is little chance of the April vote resulting in a stable cabinet and some predict a sixth election as early as the autumn, potentially jeopardising the country’s bid to join the eurozone in 2024.