Europe must consider the repeal of summer time because of the potential health benefits that the change will have for its citizens, the European Parliament said in a prepared statement after the MEPs endorsed a resolution on 8 February, which called for an “in-depth review” of the current change between winter and summer time.

The current Directive entered into force in 2011 and provides for the introduction and cancellation of summer time coordinated within the EU for internal market purposes.

Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc explained that European rules require coordination with regard to time change. “If there is an uncoordinated change of time, there will be a lot of serious problems for the smooth functioning of the Single Market and, above all, for the transport industry. If we decide to stop the change of time, this must be done throughout The EU at the same time and in the same way,” she said.

The resolution is drafted in response to initiatives and petitions of citizens concerned about the health implications of moving the clock arrows two times a year. The father of the idea of summer time is often referred to Benjamin Franklin, but it is considered that it was first introduced in Germany and the Austro-Hungary before a century to save fuel in the First World War. Summer time was introduced in Bulgaria on 1 April 1979.

Since 1996, the citizens of the Community countries are moving one hour forward in the last Sunday of March, and in the last week of October – one hour back. The benefits are controversial as many of the opponents of the turning of the arrows, including many MEPs in this debate are arguing that there are no real economic benefits of this algorithm and, at the same time, it has a negative impact on the general health situation of people.

Last year, Lithuania said it would ask the European Union to repeal the law regarding the time change, because most people are unpleasant twice a year to move their clock arrows. Earlier this year, Finland called on the EU to abandon the summer time. Even if MEPs decide to revoke the summer time, the actual drop-out will not happen immediately. Since then, the EU Commission will come into play and negotiations with the individual governments of the Member States are likely to be required.

At the same time, regardless of what Europe will decide, Bulgaria is free to remove the turning of the arrows of the clock on its own initiative when it assesses. Only a decision of the Council of Ministers is necessary.

In recent years a number of countries have waived the use of summer time. They include Kazakhstan – 9 out of 14 districts (2004), Kyrgyzstan (2005), Iraq (2007), Pakistan (2009), Bangladesh and Georgia (2010), Armenia (2011) Egypt (2014), Azerbaijan (2015).