Bulgaria Expects Over EUR 2 B in FDI in 2013
Bulgaria's foreign direct investments (FDI) inflow is expected to amount to EUR 2 B for 2012, up from EUR 1.7 B the previous year, the country's investment agency head forecast.
"Statistics show a decrease in the volumes of investments because of the loans owed to mother companies, which were recorded as investments years ago and now have been paid back," InvestBulgaria Agency CEO Borislav Stefanov said in an interview for the national radio on Wednesday.
Stefanov stressed that low taxes and low-paid work force are not sufficient prerequisites for attracting foreign investors, who are easily put off by low administration, red tape, as well as corrupted judicial system.
InvestBulgaria Agency head expects foreign direct investments to range between EUR 2 B to EUR 2.5 B in 2013.
Experts have pointed out however this most welcomed money recorded as foreign investments by statistics are mostly Russian and Bulgarian money, flowing through companies registered in the Netherlands and Switzerland.
Another concern is that foreign investors continue to take out abroad more money than they bring into the country.
The complex world economic situation, the weak domestic demand, the collapse of the real estate market and the credit crunch, along with some signals by local policy makers have forced foreign investors in the property and financial sectors to rethink their plans for the Bulgarian market.
Others have disinvested heavily or in some cases left the country outright, despite its much-lauded mix of good human resources, will to improve the business environment and a great industrial potential.
The most resilient success stories are to be found in the manufacturing and processing industry, where FDI levels have remained unchanged over the last few years and have even marked an increase after 2009.