Bulgaria and US sign key documents

Bulgaria and the US signed key documents on 5G wireless communication networks security and civil nuclear power, the Government Information Service announced. The signing took place in the presence of the Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, and the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, joined via video conference.

Earlier on 23 October, PM Borissov met the US Deputy Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy Security and Environmental Protection Keith Krak. Bulgarian PM pointed out that the acquisition of F-16 Block 70 fighters is an important step forward in the modernisation of the Bulgarian Air Force, and the US is an important strategic partner in the energy sector. Krak himself was also present at the signing of the two documents - Joint Statement and Memorandum of Understanding.

US Secretary of State Pompeo stressed the excellently done job for the preparation of building the 5G networks and expressed his conviction that the signing of the Joint Statement will guarantee the comprehensive security of the Euro-Atlantic
Pompeo also focused on the joint work of Bulgaria and the US and the results achieved in other areas, which, as he said will have a powerful effect. In his words, the protected 5G technology networks will enable all interested partners to be trained to work in a way ensuring secure networks not only for Bulgaria but also for all EU and NATO Member States.

"After our visit to the White House, during the talks held with the US President Donald Trump, Vice President Pence, Secretary of State Pompeo, US federal government, today we are signing a Joint Statement on 5G networks security and a Memorandum on civil nuclear power. These are extremely important areas,” stated PM Boyko Borissov.

The Prime Minister reminded that we live in a situation of pandemic - under economic stagnation and difficulties in communication between people. According to him, with the Joint Statement on Clean 5G Networks, we are preparing for similar situations in the future, so as the world not to be blocked. Therefore, our communications must be clean, protected, transparent, ethical and in compliance with all necessary legal norms for personal data protection. He stressed that after Bulgaria was accepted to join the waiting room of the Eurozone, guaranteeing solid and transparent finances, the EU already has common guidelines and tools for the 5G networks security. They will be built on the principles of free and fair competition, transparency and the Rule of Law.

With regard to the energy sector, PM Borissov pointed out that as of today's date, Bulgaria already has real diversification of natural gas as a strategic raw material. He cited the swift purchase of a 20% shareholding in the liquefied natural gas terminal at Alexandroupolis and the construction at a full swing of the Greece-Bulgaria gas interconnector. He reminded that from 2019 on liquefied natural gas of US origin reaches Bulgaria through the current gas transmission network. The PM said that thanks to the best reverse-flow compressor station, our country has managed to change the direction of gas import from East-West to South-North.

The US Deputy Secretary of State Keith Krak pointed out the deepening of bilateral relations between Bulgaria and the US in the sphere of security of 5G wireless communication. In his words, this does not end the mutual relationship. Moreover, both sides are deepening their cooperation in the fields of military affairs, defence and energy. In his words, all topics we work on together are important for Bulgaria and the US and show the deep relationship between our two countries and our strategic partnership. Bulgaria is a strategic partner of the US. According to him, the moment is historic. He reminded also that as the PM Borissov noted, the world is waking up and opening its eyes for protecting their 5G networks from the dangers that would be hidden by untrusted vendors. Krak added that all we need to be aware of this risk and must realise that the clean network is vital for the economic cooperation and security. And that Bulgaria joins the EU countries, which are already part of the clean network. 

Bulgarian Transport, Information Technology and Communications Minister Rossen Jeliazkov and visiting US Deputy Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Keith Krak signed a Joint Statement for a joint declaration on 5G Networks Security between Bulgaria and the US.

Bulgarian Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova and US Assistant Secretary for International Security and Non-proliferation Christopher A. Ford signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the two countries' governments on
strategic cooperation in civil nuclear power.

The US diplomat above stated that the US and Bulgaria are strong partners and allies and pursue cooperation for their security and for the good of the Alliance. He described Bulgaria as a fantastic partner and stressed the importance of the two countries' strategic partnership in many spheres, including national and energy security and energy source diversification. Christopher A. Ford appreciated all efforts that Bulgaria is making to diversify supplies.

The Joint Statement on 5G Networks follows up top-level talks in Washington in November 2019, held by PM Boyko Borissov with US President Donald Trump. The next step was taken when the two countries held a Strategic dialogue earlier this year. The current document expresses the desire of both sides to cooperate on security issues of 5G networks, which delineate to be key issues to our economies and societies, which are becoming increasingly digital ones. Bulgaria also acknowledges the common approach that the EU applies to cybersecurity in the field of 5G in partnership with NATO member countries. This ensures the reliability of the infrastructure, supply chain, and creates security that 5G networks are being deployed in Europe. The Joint Statement signed on 23 October is also an important step for Bulgaria towards building a national capacity and measures against cyber threats on a global scale.

The Memorandum of Understanding on Civil Nuclear Power will promote bilateral cooperation in line with Bulgaria's interest in new secure nuclear power technologies for civil purposes that are developed by the US. In the context of the Green Deal for EU Climate Neutrality by 2050, Bulgaria intends to expand its nuclear programme with secure technologies of the latest generation. The Memorandum also expresses the desire of both sides to interact in support of their nuclear power industries for the future development and maintenance of the infrastructure and human resources capacity for responsible use of nuclear power and technologies. The goal of the European Green Deal cannot be achieved without peaceful uses of nuclear energy. For Bulgaria, nuclear energy plays an important role in national, regional and European energy security, while providing at the same time energy at affordable prices and it is a key element in the transition to a low-carbon economy.

With this document, Bulgaria and the US are committed to the responsible use of nuclear energy and technologies, with an emphasis on human capital and labour development, education and training, to maintaining the highest standards and practices in the field of nuclear safety and security.

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