CEO Voices Hope for Salvaging Troubled Bulgarian Railways
There is some hope that the Bulgarian State Railways (BDZ) Holding can be salvaged, says Vladimir Vladimirov, Chair of the BDZ Managing Board.
Vladimirov, cited by the Bulgarian Pressa (Press) daily, grounds his optimism in the fact that the losses accumulated by the troubled and heavily-indebted company are melting.
He notes that in the first half of 2012, the said losses are estimated at BGN 9 M, compared to BGN 22 M for the same period of last year.
The most critical period for BDZ has been 2009, when the damages totaled BGN 70 M.
According to the CEO, the current debt is in the amount of BGN 740 M, with existing hope that the management of the company can eliminate the entire 2012 loss by the end of the year, or, in the worst case scenario, end the year with a loss to not exceed BGN 20 M.
Vladimirov stresses that the good results have been achieved without taking any further loans or State subsidies and attributes them to the management cutting on expenses through decreasing salaries, fuel use, and through successful public tenders.
BDZ's Passenger Services unit was recently in dire straits after its state subsidy of around BGN 14 M was suspended in July due to its failure to pay a loan installment.
Finance Minister Simeon Djankov subsequently unblocked the subsidy in exchange for a package of measures aimed at boosting revenues and reducing losses at the railway company.
Transport Minister Ivaylo Moskovski was adamant that there would be no staff cuts or reduction of the number of trains.
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