President Radev Awards Stara Planina Order, First Degree to Prof. Tzolo Voutov

Head of State Rumen Radev awarded the highest state honour Stara Planina Order, First Degree to the President of Geotechmin OOD Prof. DSc. Eng. Tzolo Voutov for his exceptional contribution and merits to the economic development of Bulgaria and establishment of contemporary industrial relations.

‘I am deeply honoured to receive Bulgaria’s highest state distinction,’ said Prof. DSc. Eng. Voutov upon receiving the award. ‘I would like to thank my family for their support and understanding over the years. Behind every personal success lies the collective effort of many inspiring people. I want to extend my heartfelt appreciation to all professionals, organisations and institutions we have worked with for their partnership and cooperation. I am so grateful to our teams, employees, all our partners with whom we implement common causes for the benefit of Bulgaria!’

The award ceremony was attended by PhD Eng. Vladimir Vutov and PhD Eng. Ivan Vutov – Vice Presidents of Geotechmin OOD who work together with Prof. DSc. Eng. Tzolo Voutov to enhance the long-term viability and sustainable development of GEOTECHMIN GROUP’s companies.

In his congratulatory message, President Radev emphasised that in the difficult years of democratic transition there were Bulgarians who remained true to their vision, dedicating their efforts and energy not to destruction, but to build up Bulgaria as a modern industrial country. ‘Today their companies provide thousands of jobs and opportunities for professional development. With their assets, management teams, leading-edge technologies, markets and human capital, they have boosted Bulgaria’s national wealth,’ said the Head of State. He added that nowadays when the global struggle for natural resources has intensified and Europe is looking for ways to accelerate the revival of its domestic mining sector, these companies are not only an important part of the backbone of Bulgaria’s extractive and processing industries, but also contribute significantly towards ensuring the country’s raw material and economic independence.

The President said that the proposals for conferring highest state honours had been made by reputable organisations and persons of great public recognition with the support of all state institutions.

The nomination of Prof. DSc. Eng. Tzolo Voutov had been proposed by the Confederation of Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria (KRIB) and supported by the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Scientific Union of Mining, Geology and Metallurgy, the Federation of the Scientific and Technical Unions in Bulgaria, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, the Bulgarian Chamber of Mining and Geology, the University of Mining and Geology “St Ivan Rilski”, the University of Chemical Technology and Metallurgy, the National Board of Tourism, and the Bulgarian Red Cross.

The reasons for this prestigious award include the economic contribution made by the companies from GEOTECHMIN GROUP, the number of newly-created jobs and the positive social impact on local communities in the regions where the companies operate. Among Prof. Voutov’s greatest achievements are the lifetime extension of Ellatzite mine by more than 25 years and implementing comprehensive, efficient and sustainable management of Ellatzite Mine Complex. Furthermore, he played an essential role in the successful completion of landmark infrastructure and environmental projects, such as Design and Construction of Benkovski-2 Tailings Pond, Sofia Metro Extension Projects, etc.

Prof. DSc. Eng. Voutov has significant research and engineering achievements in mine exploration and optimisation which ranks him among the most renowned mining specialists in the field of open pit mining of non-ferrous metals.

His versatile leadership role and active social engagement as Chairman of the Scientific and Technical Union of Mining, Geology and Metallurgy, and as a member of the management boards of business organisations, his generous charity activities including support to the noble causes of the Bulgarian Red Cross are among the outstanding merits for awarding him the Stara Planina Order, First Degree.

Prof. DSc. Eng. Tzolo Voutov has initiated a large number of donation programmes making a lasting positive impact on the demographics, spiritual development, education, culture, and infrastructure. Through Bulgarian Virtues Charity Programme, Prof. Voutov and companies from the Group support hospitals, universities, and schools providing them with equipment and general repair works. Furthermore, they renovate and build children’s playgrounds and sports fields, give scholarships to students and talented pupils, support pensioners, etc.

In 2024, Prof. DSc. Eng. Tzolo Voutov was conferred the highest honorary academic title “Doctor Honoris Causa” of the University of Mining and Geology “St. Ivan Rilski” for his exceptional contribution to the advancement of mining sciences and education. He also received the Medal of Distinction of the President of BAS and was elected a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Academy of Arts.

June 2024