Bulgaria's New Investment Ministry to Start Work in 'Few Months'Domestic | September 13, 2013, Friday // 15:07| views
Ivan Danov, Investment Planning Minister, photo by BGNES
Bulgaria's Ministry of Investment Planning will start fully functioning in the next few months, says Prime Minister, Plamen Oresharski,
Oresharski made the statement Friday during the so-called Parliamentary Control when members of the Cabinet answer questions of Members of the Parliament.
He commented in connection of a question from the MP from the now-opposition center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, and former Regional Minister in the GERB Cabinet, Lilyana Pavlova, asking why this Ministry was introduced, when it will start work, and what exactly it will do.
Oresharski explained its main functions will revolve around establishing common State policies in the sector of urban planning and development, in construction and cadaster control, guaranteeing control over the entire process from preliminary project research to realization of a particular investment, strengthening coordination between the bodies of local and central power.
He rejected the opposition's claims that the new institution will simply be another burden for the business in the country, stressing that 20 licensing regimes have been altered in the course of just several months.
"When a new institution is established, there is always a risk it will not function properly. I am not rejecting this risk, but we are applying all possible effort to accomplish the goals we set. Your fears are unfounded," said the PM.
When it took office at the end of May, Oresharski's Socialist-led government announced plans to open a new Ministry of Investment Planning, prompting many to wonder what exactly it will do and triggering suspicions it will serve the interests of certain business circles.
The new institution was also involved in two scandals since its very first days. Architect Kalin Tiholov's nomination to lead it as Minister lasted about 24 hours. Oresharski was forced to withdraw Tiholov's name amidst outrage over his active participation in a number of scandalous and murky construction projects in protected areas on the Black Sea coast.
Tiholov was replaced by Ivan Danov, who was and still is accused of syphoning EUR 15 000 from the French welfare system.
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