Business Brunch with Minister of Economy and Energy Dragomir Stoynev
Bulgarian EconMin Meets AmCham Members
Bulgaria’s Economy Minister Dragomir Stoynev criticized Standard & Poor’s over the downgrade of the outlook on the country’s credit ratings from “stable” to negative” during AmCham business brunch on Dec. 14th at the Hilton Sofia hotel. Dragomir Stoynev has accused the credit agency of commenting the situation in the country “in a purely political manner”.
“If there was some critique towards the government’s economic or social policies, this would have been completely normal. But I cannot accept purely political (comments),” the Economy Minister said.
According to S&P, Bulgaria’s growth prospects are being challenged by anemic domestic demand, resulting from low credit growth, constrained investment growth and still-high unemployment, as well as by the complex political climate, which could slow reforms.
S&P’s report noted on Friday that the improvement of Bulgarian political climate would strengthen the institutions’ functions and would increase the economic growth prospects, which, in turn, would have a favorable impact on the country’s credit rating.
Speech of Minister Stoynev:
Relations between Bulgaria and the U. S. are developing in a positive direction
14 December 2013
“In recent weeks the relations between Bulgaria and the U.S.A. in the area of economy and energy are developing in an extremely positive way,” the Minister of Economy and Energy DragomirStoynev said during a meeting with the AmCham in Bulgaria. He reminded that during his working visit to the U.S.A. American businesses were supportive of the understanding that economy should be at the forefront of the relations between the two countries.
Before the representatives of American businesses Minister Stoynev underlined that in order to gain the trust of foreign investors, a stable and predictable business environment should be guaranteed. One of the first tasks of the government was to remove the pressure on the economy and to reestablish the dialogue with businesses, he reminded. “We have already undertaken activities in this direction – a total of 84 licensing and registration regimes have been removed and amendments to the Public Procurement Act,whereby access of small and medium enterprises to them (public procurement procedures) will be facilitated, are pending adoption,” Stoynev added.
He reminded that the concept of the Operational Program “Innovations and Competitiveness” has been agreed upon with businesses in order to respond to the real needs of economy. Bulgarian businesses demand modernization of technology, improving energy efficiency and implementation of innovations in the enterprises. According to Minister Stoynev, financial instruments for the next program period are developed in such a way as to respond to the needs of the companies in this country so that they would have real access to financing. “European funds should go hand in hand with national funds,” he added.
Stoynev announced that for the first time a National Investment Fund of BGN 500 million, has been established within the framework of the 2014 budget and it will be directed towards infrastructure projects and entrepreneurs. Bulgaria is already on the way of economic growth and in order to keep this on a long-term basis, we should also develop education,” Stoynev stressed. He added that a pilot project for implementation of the dual system in this country has already been launched. The system would enable the state and businesses to provide employment to students.
Minister DragomirStoynev pointed out that in order to have a competitive economy in this country we need to have a competitive energy, too. He added that diversification and security of supplies are of key importance to Bulgarian energy. He stated that cooperation between the American company“Westinghouse” and the Bulgarian Energy Holding for the construction of Unit 7 of Kozloduy NPP is indicative in this respect. Minister Stoynev underlined that this investment into the most modern reactor will provide maximum security. “If there is a tender procedure for selection of a technology, this would mean long-term contracts for purchasing the electric energy produced by the reactor,” Stoynev explained.
Date(s) - 14/12/2013
11:00 am - 1:00 pm
You are kindly invited to a business brunch with the Minister of Economy and Energy Dragomir Stoynev to take place on Saturday, December 14th, 2013 at the Hilton Hotel Sofia as of 11:00 am to 01:00 pm.
Brunch fee: BGN 60 AmCham members, BGN 80 non-members
More information on the registration process to follow.