Bulgarian Minister Declares Economy Stable

Business | August 2, 2010, Monday // 13:23|  views

Bulgaria’s Economy, Energy and Tourism Minister, Traicho Traikov, says the policy of his team is “to help the best.” Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria’s economy is stable and the end of the crisis is near, Economy, Energy and Tourism Minister, Traicho Traikov, believes.

Traikov spoke Monday at a press conference, giving an account for his work during the first year of his term as a member of the cabinet of the ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) party.

The Minister was adamant next year will bring more calm and defined “helping the best” as the main goal of his institution.

“We try to make pro-business decisions because they benefit everyone in Bulgaria. We believe in encouraging the economy and help people not in benefiting a limited circle of individuals. This is why we insisted on maintaining the Value Added Tax (VAT), slating a certain percentage from the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for innovations, on changes in the Labor Code, among others. The trend now is to overcome the crisis – some of it is very positive, other is weaker, but the trend is a fact,” Traikov pointed out.

The Minister further explained that since day one at the post he began working on countering the practices established by his predecessors that violated state interests and on introducing transparency and efficiency as main principles.

Traikov listed the liquidation and privatization of companies as a success of his team.

In the energy sector, the Minister was firm they have studied and assessed all major projects and the state will be looking for a strategic investor for the second Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) in the town of Belene while the Russian gas line South Stream already has a new road map.

“For South Stream – last year it was known it is a good project and it is part of the former, socialist-led cabinet’s so-called “Grand Slam” with Russian energy plans, and nothing else. We tried to really examine it, not an easy task, but were able to achieve this road map that aligns with our understanding of the project,” Traikov said, adding the energy priorities continue to be diversification and security of resources and connections to neighboring countries, particularly to Greece, while the Energy Exchange would be in place by the second half of 2011.

Regarding tourism, the Minister pointed out the priority is to make Bulgaria a year-round destination. By 2013, the Bulgarian tourism will receive BGN 63 M from the EU “Regional Development” program, according to Traikov.

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Tags: economy, Energy and Tourism Minister, Traicho Traikov, VAT, GDP, crisis, Belene, NPP, South stream, GERB


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