Bulgaria Prosecution Starts Probe of Energy Agency Ex Head

Energy | February 18, 2013, Monday // 17:25|  views

The prosecution in Bulgarian capital Sofia has launched proceedings against recently fired head of the national energy regulator agency Angel Semerdzhiev.

The news comes in the wake of unprecedented protests Sunday, which saw many tens of thousands walk out to show indignation at high electricity bills.

Monday Bulgaria's Natinonal Revenue Agency had already announced it had launched an investigation against Semerdzhiev.

The Sofia Prosecution now says that it will be investigating suspicions that the former head of the energy agency (DKEVR) had abused his powers to benefit a private company.

Semerdzhiev resigned amidst an electricity pricing scandal triggered by reports that EC is referring Bulgaria, Estonia and the United Kingdom to the Court of Justice of the European Union for failing to fully apply the EU internal energy market rules.

According to the EC's press office, to date Bulgaria, Estonia and the UK have only partially transposed the Electricity and Gas Directives. The Directives had to be transposed by the Member States by 3 March 2011.

Economy and Energy Minister, Delyan Dobrev, blamed DKEVR for the EC case against Bulgaria.

At first, Semerdzhiev stated that DKEVR has already adopted one of the saidDirectives.

He explained the remaining 3 directives will be prepared by DKEVR in just days, and stated the deadline for the latter was mid-July and obviously no one had told Dobrev that a one year delay of all directives was included in the law.

However, on January 28th, he logged the request to be released before the end of his term in office as a Chair and member of the watchdog.

DKEVR is currently without a chairperson as Yuliana Ivanova was dismissed Sunday just four days after her appointment when it emerged her company illegally sold cigarettes online.

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Tags: DKEVR, Angel Semerdzhiev, electricity, prosecution, protests, National Revenue Agency


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