Marginalized Rightists Criticize Bulgarian Cabinet's Energy Moves

Domestic | June 10, 2013, Monday // 16:15|  views

Rightist Bulgarian party Democrats for Strong Bulgaria have given a press conference critizing the moves of Bulgarian Socialist Party-led new cabinet of PM Plamen Oresharski.

The Oresharski cabinet made a mistake by simply replacing the director and members of Bulgaria's state energy watchdog, the State Agency for Energy and Water Regulation (DKEVR), according to DSB's Ivan Ivanov.

"In this way, the government made meaningless people's protests, which raised the demand of more transparency in the energy sector," said Ivanov.

According to the rightist politician, the cabinet should have started a change of legal status for DKEVR, so that its members and chair are appointed by parliament, not by the executive.

"Instead of structurally reshuffling law enforcement agencies, the Oresharski cabinet should have implemented a restructuring of the energy sector," said Ivanov.

High prices of electricity and heating, believed to be the result of non-transparent cartels, were among the key grievances of street protests that led to the February resignation of the cabinet of ex-PM Boyko Borisov.

At the press conference Monday, Democrats for Strong Bulgaria also strongly critized the cabinet's stance on the frozen Belene NPP project.

The rightists expressed dissatisfaction at hints that Belene might be revived, as well as at the lack of optimism on the part of Oresharski regarding the outcome of an arbitration trial started by Russian company Rosatom against Bulgaria's NEK after the project's scrapping by the Bulgarian side.

Democrats for Strong Bulgaria, until recently chaired by former Bulgarian PM Ivan Kostov, are one of the two remaining parties seen as representatives of Bulgaria's "traditional right," the other being the Union of Democratic Forces.

DSB was a spinn-off of UDF when Kostov parted ways with former associates after losing elections in 2001, but the two parties were jointly represented in Bulgaria's last parliament under the monicker "Blue Coalition."

At the May 12 snap general election, the two traditional rightist parties chose to run separately and both scored under the 4% hurdle, which resulted in Kostov's resignation.

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Tags: Democrats for Strong Bulgaria, DSB, Union of Democratic Forces, Ivan Ivanov, DKEVR, State Commission for Energy and Water Regulation, Belene NPP, Rosatom, Plamen Oresharski, Ivan Kostov


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