Bulgaria May Open Competitiveness OP Schemes to 2020 by end-2014
The first schemes under operational program Innovations and Competitiveness to 2020 may be launched by end-2014, according to Bulgaria's caretaker Deputy Economy Minister.
Speaking at the opening of a Bulgarian-Chinese business forum on Monday, Irena Mladenova made clear that Bulgaria expected to complete the presentation of the 2014-2020 version of the operational program to the European Commission by end-September or early October.
Mladenova, as cited by the Bulgarian Telegraph Agency, did not specify a concrete deadline for the launch of the new operational program but suggested that the first schemes were expected to be opened by the end of 2013.
She said that she did not approve of the idea of launching schemes under the program before receiving the approval of the certifying authority of the management and control systems, stressing the need to avoid risks to the budget.
Mladenova pointed out that upon assuming office, the caretaker government had conducted internal inspections of the work on the operational program Competitiveness 2007-2013 due to suspected irregularities.
She explained that the caretaker government had inherited three schemes which lacked a certifying authority, adding that the certifying activity under one of them had been resumed, while the two others were to be still at risk and the reply was die in a week.
On August 18, caretaker EU Funds Minister Iliyana Tsanova informed that Eli Milusheva had been asked to resign from the post of director of the Operational Program Competitiveness due to signals about serious problems with the program.
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