Bulgarian central bank chief elected to another term

Sofia  - Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev's Socialist-led coalition pushed through the re-election of the central bank governor Ivan Iskrov on Thursday.

The opposition criticized Iskrov's appointment only six weeks ahead of July 5 parliamentary elections and nearly half a year before his six-year term expires.

According to Bulgarian laws, the new governor should not be appointed less than three months before the term of his predecessor expires.

By appointing him early, Stanishev's coalition has secured to keep Iskrov, 42, in place even if it loses the elections, as the surveys are predicting.

Considered a conservative, prudent banker, Iskrov is credited for maintaining Bulgaria's macroeconomic stability since the monetary collapse in 1997.

Bulgaria, a memeber of the European Union since 2007, has peged its currency, the lev, to the German mark and only switched to the euro as the anchor once the joint currency was introduced. (dpa)