Bulgarian government announces the first slate of measures to mitigate COVID-19 crisis within the state of emergency

On 13 March 2020 the Bulgarian government announced a set of measures in response to the expanding COVID-19 epidemic in the country within the frame of the state of emergency proclaimed by the Parliament earlier on the same day.

As exCovid19pected, the kindergartens, schools and universities remain closed, public gatherings are banned and all entertainment and commercial establishments are to be closed, except for those providing essential services such as food stores, pharmacies and banks. Employers are required to either organize their employees to work from home office or implement strict sanitary measures to protect them. The government can revise and/or expand the restrictions upon its discretion based on the development of the health crisis.

No travel ban, nor specific social and economic measures to mitigate the impact of this health crisis on the entrepreneurs and employers have been announced yet, even though they are being discussed.

Instead the Parliament has been tasked to approve emergency legislative amendment to increase the current penalty of 1 year in prison to 5 years to motivate compliance with the measures to mitigate COVID-19 crisis.