The Bulgarian government decided during its meeting on 9 January that 10 million leva (about €5 million) will be provided to the Ministry of Interior for financing projects related to the implementation of measures for Bulgaria's accession to the Schengen area.
The majority of the sum will go for finishing works of previously developed projects in 2012. These will, for example, include provision of additional hardware and software for the primary and backup computer communications centre, processing streams of data and documents related to SIS objects and the establishment of a tripartite contact centre between Bulgaria and its two Southern neighbours- Greece and Turkey.
The two new measures include the provision of logistic support for helicopters AW 109 and AW 139 E and the maintenance of integrated "Blue Border" system.
The activities will be implemented in Haskovo, Rousse and Bourgas.
The Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting which took place in October did not lead once again to a decision on Bulgaria and Romania joining Schengen, while the issue was not on the agenda of the European Council meeting in December.
It is expected that the accession of Bulgaria and Romania to the Schengen area will eventually be discussed in March.