Bulgarian Govt Denies Holding Secret Talks on Belene NPP

Energy | December 16, 2012, Sunday // 14:00|  views

Economy and Energy Minister, Delyan Dobrev, says low taxes, macroeconomic stability, low costs, and well-trained and knowledgeable experts are making Bulgaria a great place to invest. Photo by BGNES

The Bulgarian government is not conducting secret negotiations with a private investor for the construction of the controversial Belene NPP, the country's Economy and Energy Minister, Delyan Dobrev, declared Sunday.

"If investors show interest and guarantee the interests of our State, then we will bring them to the Parliament, as we did in the latest such case," said he.

Recently, key politicians from the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, claimed the Cabinet was talking to a private company behind the scenes.

"The cabinet of Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borisov is doing that behind the backs of Bulgarian citizens, at a time when a referendum regarding the future of nuclear energy is imminent," commented BSP leader, leader of the Party of European Socialists, PES, and former PM Sergey Stanishev at a press event last Tuesday.

According to Socialist frontman and former Energy Minister, MP Rumen Ovcharov, the government is close to reaching a deal with the other party.

On his part, Stanishev suggested that the private investor in question is US group Global Power Consortium (including the investment fund Quantum Group), which is little known in the area of nuclear energy.

Originally, Belene NPP had to be built by Russian state company Atomstroyexport, but the Bulgarian cabinet froze the project in early spring due to perceived lack of economic effectiveness.

Borisov addressed the allegations by saying that as stated earlier, Cabinet has closed all negotiations until carrying out the referendum on nuclear energy.

The referendum, scheduled for January 27, 2013, asks Bulgarian voters whether they would like their country to develop nuclear energy by creating new nuclear units.

Speaking Sunday for radio K2, Economy and Energy Minister Dobrev further stated that low taxes, macroeconomic stability, low costs, and well-trained and knowledgeable experts are making Bulgaria a great place to invest.

He added that the government does not focus only on foreign investments, but investments in real economy, pledging enough projects as early as the first half of 2013 that will make a sensible difference.

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Tags: Delyan Dobrev, Economy and Energy Minister, Quantum Group, Global Power Consortium, nuclear energy, Referendum, Atomstroyexport, US, Russian, Belene NPP, Boyko Borisov, Rumen Ovcharov, Sergey Stanishev, Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, PES, Rumen Ovcharov


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