Bulgaria’s President Georgi Parvanov has conferred high state honors – Stara Planina order, first class – on Serbian and Dutch ambassadors in Bulgaria Danilo Vucetic and Willem van Ee for their contribution to the development of bilateral relations.
President Parvanov said that for approximately half a century there had not been relations at a high state level with Serbia, whereas over the past four-five years the meetings with the Serbian President were innumerable.
As a result of the good relations between Bulgaria and Serbia, the bilateral economic cooperation has strengthened and there are already Bulgarian investments in Serbia and trade has doubled, noted President Parvanov.
He highlighted Bulgaria would continue to support Serbia in its EU aspirations.
“I would say that ambassador Willem van Ee was one of the persons in the diplomatic corps to leave a pronounced trace in Bulgaria. This was a time when Bulgaria was working very hard and achieved its strategic goals of EU membership and NATO and during that period we had the categorical, although critical sometimes, support of the Netherlands,” said Bulgarian President.
Ambassador Willem van Ee said the honors were for all Bulgarian and Dutch citizens who had been serving the bilateral diplomatic ties. He added this year the diplomatic relations between the two countries had developed and widened.
Bulgaria has made large efforts to catch up with and meet the European standards and achieved much progress, he said.
He noted the Netherlands would continue to help Bulgaria, but the latter had to make the decisive steps on its own.