Bulgaria's President: Energy Sector Worst Affected by Corruption

Domestic | July 4, 2016, Monday // 16:33|  views

File photo, BGNES

It is the energy sector where the "conspiracy" between foreign interests and criminal schemes of Bulgarian business circles is most visible, Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev said on Monday.

Attending an anti-corruption forum organized by the Center for the Study of Democracy, he noted that the demise of large-scale projects of the so-called "Grand Slam" is still being paid by "any Bulgarian".

He referred to the Belene nuclear plant and South Stream, one abandoned by the Bulgarian government and the other stopped by Russia, according to the Bulgarian National Radio.

The "Grand Slam" consisted of three energy projects, including the abovementioned two, that were to be carried out by Russia, amid Western concerns that the Southeastern European nation is heavily reliant on Russian gas supplies.

Plevneliev blamed projects such as Belene, the Tsankov Kamak hydro power plant, the developments and Corporate Commercial Bank (KTB), scams during the privatization of the past decades, and the collapse of Bulgaria's economy and financial system in 1996-1997 as some of the factors that slowed down Bulgaria's development.

At the event, the CSD called for the creation of an anti-corruption prosecutor's office modeled after the example of Romania (the new anti-corruption bill passed by lawmakers last week stops short of creating a separate judicial body).

Plevneliev, however, backed the anti-corruption bill, but warned it would not work if it was a product of compromise.

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Tags: Rosen Plevneliev, Center for the Study of Democracy, South stream, Belene, Tsankov Kamak, energy, corruption


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