Bulgaria's Parliamentary Committee Passes Draft Forestry Bill

Domestic | July 5, 2012, Thursday // 19:16|  views

The Chair of the Bulgaria's Parliamentary Agriculture and Forestry Committee, Desislava Taneva (r), pointed out that the thorniest article 54 has been dropped from the new Forestry Bill. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria's Parliamentary Agriculture and Forestry Committee passed Thursday the new amendments to the controversial Forestry Act on which consensus with eco activists has been reached.

The new texts were adopted at first reading almost without any debates with 12 votes for and 5 against.

The Chair of the Committee, Desislava Taneva, pointed out that the thorniest article 54 has been dropped from the new Bill. The article postulated that ski lifts and other ski facilities could be built on farming land and in forests without the need to change the statute of these lands. According to Taneva, the old text now remains – that the statute must be changed and fees must be paid for the change.

Thousands of Bulgarian eco activists and other citizens opposing the Forestry Act staged week-long protest rallies in the area of the key intersection of Orlov Most (Eagles Bridge) in Sofia after the Parliament passed the amendments to the Act on June 13.

On the following Saturday the President issued a veto on all of the texts, which was passed by the Parliament on June 27.

The Member of the Parliament from the opposition, left-wing Coalition for Bulgaria, Spas Panchev proposed to not pass the new Bill in a hurry and stressed that the new texts do not have enough justification.

He voiced suspicion that the so-called "change of statute" clause still carries concealed possibilities for lobbyism, especially when private forests are concerned.

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Tags: protest, Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, Nature for People and Regions, parliament, tseko minev, protected areas, Forestry Act, Rosen Plevneliev, GERB, protesters, GERB, MP, veto, Coalition for Bulgaria, Forestry Bill, article 54, Desislava Taneva, Parliamentary Agriculture and Forestry Committee, statute, land, Borisova Gradina, Miroslav Naydenov


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