Bulgarian FinMin Blasts Plovdiv Mayor over EU Funds

Finance | August 26, 2011, Friday // 10:53|  views

Bulgaria's Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister, Simeon Djankov, says the city of Plovdiv is known for poor work on EU projects. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister, Simeon Djankov, has blasted the Mayor of the city of Plovdiv, Slavcho Atanasov, over the insignificant number of EU-funding projects.

During a check on the reconstruction of the ancient Roman stadium in the city, Djankov said the second largest city in Bulgaria should have the second best EU projects budget, but unfortunately the City Hall has close to nothing when it comes to EU funding.

According to the Deputy PM, Plovdiv is known for poor work on these projects, unlike the City Halls of the capital Sofia and the Black Sea city of Burgas, which are headed by his ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria, GERB, party. The Finance Minister further pointed out such projects as the Roman stadium are usually being realized with municipal co-financing, accusing Atanasov of rejecting this option and forcing the cabinet to slate BGN 850 000 from the State budget.

The money is to be refunded by the EU after the completion of the first stage.

During his visit Djankov was accompanied by the Regional Governor of Plovdiv, Ivan Totev and GERB Member of the Parliament and Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Economy, Menda Stoyanova.

Totev says the renovations and the reconstruction works are on time and on schedule.

"This project is to entirely change the vision of Plovdiv's main street and will make the city an even bigger tourist attraction," the Regional Governor pointed out.

The investment amount is estimated at BGN 711 708 (with Value Added Tax – VAT) and the deadline is December 15.

Atanasov took office after winning the previous local elections on the joint ballot of his then far-right, nationalist VMRO party and GERB, only to denounce both formations later. It is expected he will run for another term in the fall as an independent candidate.

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Tags: Slavcho Atanasov, projects, Simeon Djankov, finance minister, Deputy Prime Minister, funds, EU, mayor, Plovdiv, GERB, Ivan Totev, Menda Stoyanova


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