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Voice of America, 97-04-19

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>


CONTENTS

  • [01] BULGARIA VOTES (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)
  • [02] BULGARIA VOTES UPDATE (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)
  • [03] BULGARIAN ELECTIONS BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)
  • [04] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)

  • [01] BULGARIA VOTES (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)

    DATE=4/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-213119
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: BULGARIANS ARE VOTING TODAY (SATURDAY) FOR A NEW PARLIAMENT WHICH IS ALMOST CERTAIN TO BE CONTROLLED BY THE CENTER-RIGHT UNION OF DEMOCRATIC FORCES (U-D-F). V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM SOFIA THAT VOTING HAS BEEN GOING SMOOTHLY BUT TURNOUT HAS NOT BEEN PARTICULARLY HEAVY.

    TEXT: THERE IS LITTLE DRAMA IN THE BULGARIAN ELECTION AS THE OUTCOME IS CONSIDERED CERTAIN. THE FORMER RULING PARTY, THE SOCIALISTS, IS SO DISCREDITED FROM THE COUNTRY'S ECONOMIC COLLAPSE AT THE END OF THE YEAR THAT IT IS NOT EXPECTED TO GET MORE THAN 25 PERCENT OF THE VOTE.

    SATURDAY'S WEATHER HAS BEEN CONDUCIVE TO VOTING. WHILE SPRING HAS NOT YET ARRIVED, TEMPERATURES ARE MILDER THAN IN RECENT DAYS, PROMPTING SOME PEOPLE TO DISCARD THEIR WINTER COATS.

    U-D-F LEADER IVAN KOSTOV CAST HIS BALLOT EARLY IN A MOUNTAIN VILLAGE NEAR SOFIA. HE URGED ALL BULGARIANS TO VOTE, A MESSAGE STRESSED BY THE PRESIDENT AND EVEN THE EXILED KING, SIMEON THE SECOND, WHO WAS ENTHUSIASTICALLY RECEIVED DURING A VISIT EARLIER THIS WEEK.

    MR. KOSTOV SAYS IF AS EXPECTED HE BECOMES PRIME MINISTER HIS FIRST JOB WILL BE TO SUBMIT A PACKAGE OF RADICAL ECONOMIC REFORMS TO THE PARLIAMENT. MR. KOSTOV SAYS IN THIS ELECTION BULGARIA IS MAKING A DECISIVE CHOICE IN FAVOR OF REFORMS AND INTEGRATION WITH WESTERN EUROPE. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/DW/KL
    19-Apr-97 9:28 AM EDT (1328 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [02] BULGARIA VOTES UPDATE (S ONLY) BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)

    DATE=4/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-213123
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: VOTING IS OVER IN BULGARIA'S PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION IN WHICH THE CENTER-RIGHT UNION OF DEMOCRATIC FORCES (U-D-F) IS EXPECTING A BIG VICTORY OVER THE FORMER RULING PARTY, THE SOCIALISTS. V-O-A'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM SOFIA THAT VOTING THROUGHOUT BULGARIA HAS BEEN STEADY ALL DAY.

    TEXT: ELECTION OBSERVERS FROM THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE RETURNED TO THE CAPITAL FROM THE NORTH AND REPORTED THE TURNOUT THERE WAS ABOUT 60 PERCENT.

    EARLY EXIT POLLS SUGGEST THAT THREE SMALLER PARTIES ARE EXPECTED TO HAVE EACH GAINED THE FOUR PERCENT OF THE VOTE NEEDED TO JOIN THE SOCIALISTS AND CONSERVATIVES IN PARLIAMENT. AS THE EVENING GOES ON, THE ONLY QUESTION IS THE SIZE OF THE U-D-F VICTORY. PARTY LEADERS CONTINUE TO SAY THAT THEY EXPECT THE U-D-F TO HAVE AT LEAST 60 PERCENT OF THE VOTE AND AN ABSOLUTE MAJORITY IN PARLIAMENT.

    FOR MANY BULGARIANS THIS SECOND PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION IN LESS THAN TWO AND A HALF YEARS IS MERELY A FORMALIZATION OF THE MORE DRAMATIC EVENTS OF LAST FEBRUARY, WHEN THE SOCIALISTS WERE FORCED TO RESIGN.

    SINCE THEN A CARETAKER GOVERNMENT LED BY THE U-D-F HAS BEEN GOVERNING BULGARIA AND TAKING THE FIRST STEPS TOWARDS IMPLEMENTING THE MARKET REFORMS THAT ALL PARTIES NOW FAVOR. HYPERINFLATION, A COLLAPSING CURRENCY AND COLLAPSING OUTPUT HAVE PUSHED OVER HALF ALL BULGARIANS BELOW THE POVERTY LINE. OFFICIAL ELECTION RESULTS ARE UNLIKELY TO BE ANNOUNCED UNTIL TUESDAY. (SIGNED)
    NEB/BDW/DW/KL
    19-Apr-97 1:16 PM EDT (1716 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [03] BULGARIAN ELECTIONS BY BARRY WOOD (SOFIA)

    DATE=4/19/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-213131
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: PRELIMINARY RESULTS ARE COMING IN FROM BULGARIA'S PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION AND THEY SHOW THAT, AS EXPECTED, THE CENTER RIGHT PARTY, THE UNION OF DEMOCRATIC FORCES -- THE U-D-F HAS SOUNDLY DEFEATED THE SOCIALISTS. VOA'S BARRY WOOD REPORTS FROM SOFIA.

    TEXT: THE U-D-F HAS DECLARED VICTORY AND THE SOCIALISTS CONCEDED DEFEAT. ALL THAT REMAINS TO BE KNOWN IS THE MARGIN OF VICTORY.

    FIRST RESULTS INDICATE THAT THE PRO-NATO, PRO-EUROPEAN UNION U-D-F RECEIVED ABOUT 53 PERCENT OF THE VOTE. THAT IS ENOUGH FOR AN ABSOLUTE MAJORITY IN THE 240-SEAT BULGARIAN PARLIAMENT. THE SOCIALISTS APPEAR TO BE GETTING ONLY 22 PERCENT. THEY ARE FOLLOWED BY THREE SMALLER PARTIES -- EACH WITH FIVE TO SEVEN PERCENT OF THE VOTE.

    AT A VICTORY NEWS CONFERENCE, U-D-F LEADER IVAN KOSTOV, PROMISED TO MOVE QUICKLY IN PRESENTING A PACKAGE OF MARKET-BASED REFORMS TO THE NEW PARLIAMENT. HE DID NOT RULE OUT INCLUDING SOME OF THE SMALLER PARTIES IN THE NEW GOVERNMENT. HE SAID THE ELECTION IS A NEW BEGINNING FOR BULGARIA AND A STRONG ENDORSEMENT FOR THE COUNTRY BECOMING PART OF WESTERN STRUCTURE.

    VOTER TURNOUT WAS AS EXPECTED, WITH 61 TO 63 PERCENT OF THE SIX MILLION ELIGIBLE VOTERS ACTUALLY CASTING BALLOTS. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SD
    19-Apr-97 6:15 PM EDT (2215 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


    [04] N-Y ECON WRAP (S & L) BY BRECK ARDERY (NEW YORK)

    DATE=4/18/97
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-213107
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    /// RE-RUNNING W/CORRECT NUMBER ///

    INTRO: STOCK PRICES IN THE UNITED STATES WERE UP (TODAY/FRIDAY) FOR THE FOURTH OF FIVE SESSIONS THIS WEEK. VOA CORRESPONDENT BRECK ARDERY REPORTS FROM NEW YORK.

    TEXT: THE DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE CLOSED AT 67 HUNDRED THREE, UP ALMOST 45 POINTS. FOR THE WEEK, THE INDUSTRIAL AVERAGE GAINED 312 POINTS OR FIVE PERCENT. THE BROADER AND MORE REPRESENTATIVE STANDARD AND POOR'S 500 INDEX CLOSED FRIDAY AT 766, UP FOUR AND ONE-HALF POINTS.

    ANALYSTS SAY THAT, WITH STOCK PRICES HIGHER FOUR OUT OF FIVE DAYS THIS WEEK, THERE IS SOME REASON TO BELIEVE THE RECENT 10 PERCENT DOWNWARD CORRECTION IS OVER. BUT OTHERS STILL URGE CAUTION, SAYING A STRONG REBOUND DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN THE END OF A CORRECTION.

    THE U-S COMMERCE DEPARTMENT HAS ANNOUNCED AN EMBARRASSING BILLION DOLLAR MISTAKE IN CALCULATIONS WHICH CAUSED A DRASTIC UNDERESTIMATE OF THE DECLINE IN THE U-S TRADE DEFICIT IN FEBRUARY. ORIGINALLY, THE TRADE DEFICIT WAS SAID TO HAVE DROPPED BY EIGHT AND ONE HALF PERCENT. BUT THE COMMERCE DEPARTMENT SAYS IT MADE ERRORS IN CALCULATING OIL IMPORTS AND THE REAL DROP IN THE TRADE DEFICIT WAS ALMOST 18 PERCENT.

    THE AIRTOUCH COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY WILL PAY FOUR AND ONE HALF BILLION DOLLARS TO BUY THE CELLULAR TELEPHONE OPERATIONS OF THE U-S WEST COMPANY. THE DEAL WOULD, IF APPROVED, MAKE AIRTOUCH THE SECOND-LARGEST CELLULAR TELEPHONE SERVICE PROVIDER IN THE UNITED STATES -- BEHIND THE A-T AND T CORPORATION.

    /// REST OPT ///

    ONE OF THE STAR PERFORMERS IN FRIDAY'S STOCK MARKET RALLY WAS THE MICROSOFT COMPUTER SOFTWARE COMPANY. MICROSOFT REPORTED AN 85 PERCENT INCREASE IN QUARTERLY EARNINGS AND ITS STOCK PRICE SOARED. HOWEVER, MICROSOFT WARNED -- AS IT HAS SEVERAL TIME IN THE PAST -- THAT IT WILL NOT BE POSSIBLE TO SUSTAIN THE CURRENT PACE OF EARNINGS GROWTH.

    THE MCDONALD'S RESTAURANT CHAIN THOUGHT ITS LATEST "TEENIE BEANIE BABY" PROMOTION IN THE UNITED STATES WOULD LAST FIVE WEEKS. BUT, JUST ONE WEEK INTO THE PROMOTION THE COMPANY HAS ALMOST EXHAUSTED ITS SUPPLY OF 100 MILLION OF THE MINIATURE DOLLS IT WAS GIVING AWAY WITH ITS MEALS. (SIGNED) NEB/NY/BA/LSF/LWM
    18-Apr-97 7:11 PM EDT (2311 UTC)
    NNNN
    Source: Voice of America


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