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SOFIA MORNING NEWS FOR 2014-11-26
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26 November 2014, Issue 4090
by Novinite.com
Bulgaria's Daily Newspaper since 2001
10563 subscribers of Novinite.com
147692 articles
590 interviews
9635 pictures
 
BUSINESS POLITICS WORLD SOCIETY SPORTS FORUM
 
Holders of Guaranteed Deposits in Bulgaria's KTB Number 255 000


There are 255 000 depositors whose money in Corporate Commercial Bank (KTB) is guaranteed under the law, newly-appointed Deposits Insurance Fund Chairman Radoslav Milenkov has said.read
Bulgaria Deputy PM Calls for Minumum Wage Increase in 2015


Social Minister and Deputy PM for social policy Ivaylo Kalfin has announced he will join trade unions' calls and insist on increasing the minimum wage by BGN 40.read
Bulgaria PM Dismisses Ultimatum, Patriots to Withdraw Support


The Prime Minister Boyko Borisov will not demand the resignation of Deputy Defence Minister Orhan Ismailov, despite the ultimatum declared by the Patriotic Front (PF) for withdrawing their support for the coalition government. read
 
 
MORE TOP NEWS
Reuters: Bulgaria Picks 2 Local, 2 Int'l Banks for Bridge Loan

State Aid to FIB in Line with EU Rules, Commission Says

Bulgaria Prosecution 'Subject to Political Pressure' - Chief Prosecutor

Justice Minister Expects Negative EC Report on Judiciary

Bulgarian TPP Carries Highest Pollution Cost in Europe

EU Commission Allows Bulgaria to Use EU Funds for Sofia Tech Park

UNHCR Calls on Bulgarians to "See Refugees Through Different Eyes"

EU High Representative Calls for Restart in West-Russia Relationship

French President Suspends Delivery of First Mistral Warship to Russia

Russia Halts Coal Supplies to Ukraine


UPS & DOWNS
Veliko Tarnovo Hoteliers Are Most Hospitable In Bulgaria

Bulgaria's Grape Harvest In Bad Shape
QUOTE OF THE DAY

"One of the diseases I see as most widespread in Europe is solitude, typical for those who do not have any relations. It is particularly seen in elderly people, often left to their own destiny, as well as in young people with no points of reference and opportunities for the future; it is equally seen in the numerous poor people inhabiting our cities and in the lost-looking eyes of the immigrants who came here to look for a better future."

Pope Francis commenting on the challenges ahead of Europe during a visit to the European Parliament on Tuesday. The head of the Catholic Church also took the occasion to describe in a nutshell how Europe looks nowadays:

"One receives the general impression that Europe is a grandmother who is neither fertile nor vivacious anymore."


"The Chief Prosecutor is not God. But the Chief Prosecutor is not a man to wave the white flag and start complaining. I am doing my best."

Bulgaria's Chief Prosecutor Sotir Tsatsarov commenting on alleged "political pressure" which he says is being imposed on his office with regard to "Filip Zlatanov's notebook", a controversial piece of evidence in a key trial reportedly involving GERB politicians' names.

"D.P. is not a certain person, behind these initials there is one [person] today, there will be another tomorrow, if we go on in this direction there will be another... "D.P." will be always there."

Tsatsarov commenting on the initials "D.P." present in the notebook which some associate with lawmaker Delyan Peevski.

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TOP NEWS
BULGARIA IMAM DETAINED IN OPERATION AGAINST 'ANTI-DEMOCRATIC IDEOLOGY' IN 4 CITIES

Bulgaria's Prosecutor's Office and the National Security Agency (DANS) are conducting a special operation against radical ideologies in four Bulgarian cities, said the prosecution on its website.

The operation is part of an investigation for “propagation of fascist or other anti-democratic ideology or forceful change of the public and state order, provided in the Constitution” and “propagation of war”. Both violations, according to Bulgaria's Penal Code, are punishable by imprisonment or a fine. read more


BUSINESS

EU COMMISSION ALLOWS BULGARIA TO USE EU FUNDS FOR SOFIA TECH PARK

Bulgaria has been given the thumbs up to spend BGN 83 M co-financed by the European Commission on the construction of Sofia Tech Park, officials say.

Tuesday's approval from the EU Commission's Directorate-General for Competition comes after the money had remained frozen for months.

The move will enable Bulgaria's Economy Ministry to receive advanced payment which is to cover current costs.

First sods on Sofia Tech Park are now expected in December, with President Rosen Plevneliev to carry out the ceremony.

Contracts under the Sofia Tech Park project were signed as early as May this year.

Economy Minister Bozhidar Lukarski described the Commission's decision as positive.

"The procedure is a message to businesses that the scientific and technological park will become reality and we are waiting for the interest in the project to grow," Lukarski told reporters.

National financing of the project amounts to approximately BGN 15 M.

Climbing-wall manufacturer Walltopia, a world leader, has declared it will be the first private investor into Sofia Tech Park and is also expected to start construction of its Collider Activity Centre next month.

Sofia Tech Park is expected to be complete by end-2015 or the first weeks of 2016. read more


FINANCE

HOLDERS OF GUARANTEED DEPOSITS IN BULGARIA'S KTB NUMBER 255 000

There are 255 000 depositors whose money in Corporate Commercial Bank (KTB) is guaranteed under the law, newly-appointed Deposits Insurance Fund Chairman Radoslav Milenkov has said.

Earlier this week the DIF officially announced the names of all nine banks which are to repay KTB deposits of up to BGN 196 000 within the next five years.

Milenkov told the Bulgarian National Radio that the total sum to be reimbursed to asset holders was roughly BGN 3.6 B.

He voiced his regret that KTB customers will be able to access their money only on workdays due to "technical reasons", despite the initial intention to have the banks open for that purpose on Saturday and Sunday at least during the first few weeks.

Milenkov called on depositors not to line up in huge queues rushing to the banks immediately after repayment starts December 4.

Withdrawal of the deposits will be levied, with BGN 3 paid for sums of up to BGN 3000, with the charge growing for bigger amounts.

First transactions to other financial companies (different from KTB, including the bank where the customer is having access to his/her money) will be free for any sum of up to BGN 10 000 and will cost BGN 12  for a sum going beyond.

The exchange rate used to repay deposits held in a currency other than BGN will be calculated as of December 4, regardless of when the customer chooses to operate with his money.

Depositors who have additional questions can use the DIF's website to find out more information or directly visit the FAQ page. read more


REUTERS: BULGARIA PICKS 2 LOCAL, 2 INT'L BANKS FOR BRIDGE LOAN

Two Bulgarian and two local banks have been chosen to provide a bridge loan worth EUR 1.3 B, two sources have told Reuters.

The country has picked Citi, HSBC and local units of Societe Generale and Unicredit, the sources, reportedly familiar with the process, are quoted as saying on the condition of anonymity. read more


STATE AID TO FIB IN LINE WITH EU RULES, COMMISSION SAYS

The European Commission said on Tuesday it has found that liquidity support granted by Bulgaria to First Investment Bank (FIB) was in line with EU state aid rules.

Bulgaria granted a five-month state deposit of BGN 1.2 B (EUR 600 M) to FIB following a bank run in June as part of a Bulgarian liquidity scheme approved by the Commission. The maturity of the deposit will expire on Friday. read more


POLITICS

BULGARIA PM DISMISSES ULTIMATUM, PATRIOTS TO WITHDRAW SUPPORT

The Prime Minister Boyko Borisov will not demand the resignation of Deputy Defence Minister Orhan Ismailov, despite the ultimatum declared by the Patriotic Front (PF) for withdrawing their support for the coalition government.

In an interview for daily Presa, Borisov said that he is not going to succumb to the pressure of the Patriots and will not allow anyone to threaten the ethnic peace in the country. read more


BULGARIA IN EU

JUSTICE MINISTER EXPECTS NEGATIVE EC REPORT ON JUDICIARY

Bulgaria's Justice Minister Hristo Ivanov expects a negative annual report on justice and internal affairs of the European Commission on Bulgaria.

Ivanov told the BNT public broadcaster breakfast show, that most likely the EC will conclude that Bulgaria “has lost direction in the judiciary reform and loses the trust of its international partners.” read more


SOCIETY

BULGARIA DEPUTY PM CALLS FOR MINUMUM WAGE INCREASE IN 2015

Social Minister and Deputy PM for social policy Ivaylo Kalfin has announced he will join trade unions' calls and insist on increasing the minimum wage by BGN 40.

Kalfin declared Tuesday he considered freezing of minimum income to be dangerous for the economy.

In his words, he and his colleagues at the Council of Ministers were working to produce within days a final decision on how much the retirement age is to grow next year.

He described as a "bad decision" main ruling party GERB's idea to freeze the minimum wage.

"Fifteen months of deflation in Bulgaria means sluggish consumption and sluggish internal market. There is no way for all this not to reflect on the entire economy. One of the ways to tackle it is to push the income [up], and moreover the lowest income," the Bulgarian National Radio quoted Kalfin as saying.

On Monday one of the two biggest Bulgarian trade unions KNSB also demanded a hike in the minimum wage.

Employers, alongside the Finance Minister, however maintain such a move could hinder Bulgaria's fragile growth. read more


TRAFFIC POLICE WILL NOT PULL OVER MOTORISTS UNLESS NECESSARY

Bulgaria's traffic police will not pull over motorists for speeding and all contacts between drivers and police on the road will be filmed.

This are the two main measures against traffic police corruption, presented by Bulgaria's Interior Minister Veselin Vuchkov at a press conference on Tuesday in Sofia. read more


UNHCR CALLS ON BULGARIANS TO "SEE REFUGEES THROUGH DIFFERENT EYES"

The United Nations refugee agency has launched an anti-xenophobia media campaign calling on Bulgarians to "see refugees through different eyes".

"The idea for this campaign, the most ambitious we have ever launched here, is to encourage people to see refugees for who they are – regular people who have fled horrific violence and persecution," United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees' representative in Bulgaria Roland-François Weil said on unhcr.org. read more


INTERIOR MINISTRY TO PRESENT NEW ANTI-CORRUPTION MEASURES

Bulgaria's Interior Ministry will present on Tuesday new rules for the work of police officers, aiming to combat corruption, especially among traffic police.

The new rules will minimise the direct contact between the traffic police and the motorists. One of the ideas is to film each interaction between the police and the drivers. read more


GOOGLE, BTV 'BEST BRAND IN BULGARIA'

Global search giant Google is the best-known brand in Bulgaria, a yearly Top 20 ranking shows.

While the first five brands are international (Coca-Cola, Nescafe, OMV and Adidas come after Google), the sixth position is occupied by the Bulgarian private national channel bTV.

The 2014 ranking is also the first time when there are five Bulgarian brands in the shortlist, according to Superbrands, a global organization represented in eighty countries and dedicated to promoting those brands which dominate on a national market.

Alongside bTV, mineral water producer Devin, private TV channel NOVA, website Abv.bg and restaurant chain HAPPY are the other Bulgarian brands in the Top 20, ranking 7th, 11th, 12th and 17th respectively.

Bulgaria has been a Superbrands member since 2005. read more


ENVIRONMENT

BULGARIAN TPP CARRIES HIGHEST POLLUTION COST IN EUROPE

The Maritsa Iztok-2 Thermal Power Plant (TPP) is topping by far a European list of the continent's most pollutive industrial facilities, a report published Tuesday shows.

This is one position up compared to 2009, when Bulgaria's biggest TPP was second. read more


SPORTS

KLITSCHKO'S PROMOTION AGENCY SUES PULEV OVER DRUG ALLEGATIONS

The promotion agency of reigning heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko K2 has filed a lawsuit against Bulgarian boxer Kubrat Pulev because of his allegations that the Ukrainian might be using drugs.

Pulev announced this at a meeting with Bulgarian media in Sofia earlier today. read more


CRIME

BULGARIA PROSECUTION 'SUBJECT TO POLITICAL PRESSURE' - CHIEF PROSECUTOR

The notorious case of 'Filip Zlatanov's notebook' is resulting in pressure being applied on the Prosecutor's Office from all sides, Chief Prosecutor Sotir Tsatsarov said on Tuesday.

Tsatsarov's comments follow an evening of protests in front of the Sofia City Court building over the standstill to which the months-long case has been brought after the book, considered a key evidence, surprisingly disappeared earlier in November.

The notebook disappeared at a key stage of the trial in November and topped the news agenda in Bulgaria, with politicians whose names were mentioned in the notebook denying involvement.

Recent discussions have mainly referred to the initials "D.P." and many alleged controversial Movement for Rights and Freedoms (DPS) Delyan Peevski was behind them. However, Tsatsarov explained on Tuesday they "do not belong to a certain person, but are rather representative of a certain type of governance and a mechanism currently in action."

In mid-July 2013, Bulgaria's prosecuting authority pressed charges of malfeasance in office against the ex-Chair of the Commission on Prevention and Ascertainment of Conflict of Interest (CPACI), with Deputy Chief Prosecutor Borislav Sarafov citing excerpts from a "very interesting notebook" seized from Zlatanov's desk, indicating that he had received instructions about the progress of certain cases.

"Zlatanov complied with the instructions – to strike, to postpone, to delay, and even to conceal cases," Sarafov stated then, adding that the people mentioned in the notebook included Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev, as well as E.D., MP of GERB, I.F., B.B., and Ts. Ts.

The people behind the initials are believed to be Iskra Fidosova, formerly a leading figure in center-right party Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) and former Chair of the Parliamentary Legal Committee, Boyko Borisov, GERB leader and former Prime Minister, GERB Deputy Chairman and former Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, and GERB MP Emil Dimitrov.

Borisov and Tsvetanov firmly denied involvement. But as for Fidosova, the scandal prompted her resignation as a lawmaker.

Zlatanov adamantly rejected reports that the notes in his infamous personal notebook were instructions for his work, adding that they had been his own ideas and remarks.

Asked to shed light on the scheme involving I.F., B.B., and Ts. Ts. contained in his notebook, he said that he could not remember whom he had had in mind, adding that he had simply "jotted something down at a certain moment."

Zlatanov was removed from office in October 2013 and sentenced to 3.5 years of imprisonment. Zlatanov was charged with violating official duties, thereby eroding public trust in the activities of the CPACI as an independent authority.

According to the indictment, Zlatanov committed illegal activities in the probes against Rosen Plevneliev, his former advisor and former Deputy Chair of the Financial Supervision Committee Dimana Rankova, and former chief auditor of the Bulgarian National Audit Office Lidia Buneva.


read more


WORLD

DOZENS PLUNDER FERGUSON AFTER COURT RULING ON MICHAEL BROWN

More than 80 people have been arrested in the St Louis county, US, over burglary and trespassing in the last hours after a court ruling sparked unrest across the region.

Sixty-one of those detained were in Ferguson, where the teenager Michael Brown was shot dead by police officer Darren Wilson in August.

About a dozen buildings have burned down after being set ablaze by protesters, USA Today reports.

Wilson is presently on paid leave. Brown's family gave voice to their shock and anger at the court ruling not to take legal action against the officer.

Ferguson's population is mostly black (67.4% as of the 2010 census), but mainly white police officers are in charge of patrolling.

Many in the city's African-American community have demanded that the officer be charged with murder.

Calls have also been supported by thousands of people across the US, with protesters marching in a number of venues to vent their anger at the ruling.

But US President Barack Obama urged citizens late on Monday to accept the court's decision.  

read more


EU

EU HIGH REPRESENTATIVE CALLS FOR RESTART IN WEST-RUSSIA RELATIONSHIP

The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini called for a restart in the relationship between the West and Russia.

In an interview for Austrian daily Kurier, Mogherini explained that Russia has a close relationship with the European Union (EU) and is very important in terms of the common European geography, history, culture, economy and energy policy. read more


SOUTHEAST EUROPE

TURKEY 'IN TALKS' WITH WESTINGHOUSE ON THIRD NPP

Turkey has begun preliminary talks with US-based Westinghouse Electric Company on the construction of a third nuclear plant in the country.

The news was announced in a Westinghouse statement. read more


RUSSIA

FRENCH PRESIDENT SUSPENDS DELIVERY OF FIRST MISTRAL WARSHIP TO RUSSIA

France's President Francois Hollande has announed the delivery of a Mistral helicopter carrier to Russia is now suspended until further notice.

Paris has cited the ongoing unrest in Ukraine's east as a reason. read more


UKRAINE

RUSSIA HALTS COAL SUPPLIES TO UKRAINE

Ukraine's Minister of Energy Yuriy Prodan announced on Monday that Russia had suspended coal supplies to Ukraine.

This is to bring additional harm to the energy policy of the country, which is already experiencing serious problems with the supply of coal due to the conflict in the Donbass region, where most of the coal reserves lie. read more



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