Bulgaria's Caretaker Ministers

Politics » DOMESTIC | August 6, 2014, Wednesday // 16:11
Bulgaria: Bulgaria's Caretaker Ministers Bulgaria's new caretaker government first session. Photo: BGNES

Georgi Bliznashki, Caretaker Prime Minister

Constitutional Law Professor Georgi Bliznashki will head Bulgaria's caretaker government that will prepare snap elections to be held in October.

A maverick Socialist Party member, Bliznashki has become known recently with the President Rosen Plevneliev's initiative aimed at holding a referendum on amendments to the Election Law.

On Tuesday, President Rosen Plevneliev named Bliznashki as caretaker premier.Bliznashki graduated at Faculty of Law at the Sofia University in 1982. He has written several landmark books on Bulgarian parliamentary rule. He was member of European Parliament in 2005-2007.

He was expelled from the Socialist Party in March this year for ‘’damaging the party’s prestige through public statements and activities aimed against party policy and decisions."


Ekaterina Zaharieva, Caretaker Deputy PM for Economy

Ekaterina Zaharieva has been appointed caretaker Deputy PM in charge of economic policy, caretaker Minister of Regional Development and Caretaker Minister of Investment Planning.

She was born on August 8, 1975.

She graduated from the the Bertolt Brecht Foreign Language High School in Pazardzhik, specializing in German. Zaharieva obtained an MA in Law from the Plovdiv University "Paisii Hilendarski" and completed specializations at a number of international universities.

She worked as a lawyer in the period 2001- 2003.

Zaharieva was appointed head of a directorate specialized in legal and administrative service at the Ministry of Environment and Water in 2007.

Since August 2009, she has been Deputy Minister in charge of regional Development and Public Works.

She was appointed Chief Secretary of the President on January 23, 2012.

In the period March 13 – May 29, 2013, she was Deputy Prime Minister and Regional Development Minister in the caretaker government appointed by President Rosen Plevneliev.

After that, she was appointed head of the President's Cabinet.

She is fluent in English and German.


Yordan Hristoskov, Caretaker Deputy PM for Social Policy

Professor Yordan Hristoskov is part of the Macroeconomics department of the Institute of Economics at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences.

He is Professor at the Plovdiv University "Paisii Hilendarski", where he reads lectures in social policy and social security.

He has rich practical experience as Deputy Minister and Minister of Labor and Social Policy (1991-1994), Minister in the caretaker government of Reneta Indzhova, advisor to the President on social affairs (1995-1997) and Director of the National Social Security Institute (2000-2009).

He gained prominence for his contribution during his term in office as a member of the Bureau of the International Social Security Association (ISSA) and in his capacity as a consultant and expert on a large number of projects of the European Commission, the World Bank, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).


Hristo Ivanov,  Deputy Prime Minister for Justice, Internal Order and Security and caretaker Minister of Justice

He was born on September 13, 1974 in Sofia.

He holds an MA in Law from the Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski". He completed specializations at the Fulbright/Hubert Humphrey Fellowship Program, the Washington College of Law in the spheres of law, national security, and court appointment procedures in the US.

In the period 1996-2002, he was project coordinator in the sphere of judiciary and judicial reform within the American Bar Association's Rule of Law Initiative. From 2002 to 2006, he was independent consultant on projects of international institutions, international technical assistance programs and private customers related to evaluating legislation and consolidation of the rule of law.

He has been Program Director of the Bulgarian Institute for Legal Initiatives since 2006, where he heads projects in the sphere of judicial reform, prevention of corruption and consolidation of the rule of law.

He has been registered as a lawyer since 2002.

He is fluent in English and Russian.


Iliyana Tsanova, Deputy PM for EU Funds Management

She was born on January 19, 1976 in Sofia.

She holds an MA in Finance from the University of National and World Economy (UNWE) and has completed a postgraduate program in Financial Management at the George Washington University as a USAID fellow and the Georgetown University.

In the period 2001 – 2003, she was part of the auditing unit of Deloitte-Bulgaria.

From 2003 to 2014, she worked at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). In the period 2006 – 2014, she worked at the EBRD HQ in London.

She has rich experience in the structuring, negotiation and implementation of investments in equity and debt financing of infrastructure projects in Southeastern European countries, Ukraine and Russia, as well as in co-financing of EU-funded projects. As an EBRD representative, she worked with governments and international financial institutions on the restructuring of public utility companies, the creation of regulatory bodies in the water sector, public-private partnerships, the structuring of innovative investment facilities in the sphere of infrastructure and fiscal decentralization.

She is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Western Balkans Municipal Infrastructure Development Fund.

She is a creator of the Fund for Local Authorities and Governments in Bulgaria - FLAG and an outgoing member of its Board of Directors.

In the period March 13, 2013 – May 29, 2013, she was Deputy Prime Minister for EU Funds Management in the caretaker government appointed by President Rosen Plevneliev.


Vasil Shtonov, Caretaker Minister of Economy and Energy

Shtonov graduated as bachelor of sciences in electronic engineering and finance at the University of Pennsylvania in 1995.

He graduated as master of sciences in business administration at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1999.

Until 2004 Shtonov had worked as an investment banker in the United States in the fields of energy and technologies and a corporate management adviser. He had managed some large-scale deals such as the merger of Bell Atlantic with GTE in 2000.In 2004 Shtonov set up the Sofia office of international consultancy McKinsey where he had worked until 2009, mainly in banking, telecommunications and energy.

Since 2010 until August 4, 2014 he had served as Director Marketing and Strategies at Bulgaria’s Blizoo cable services provider.


Miroslav Nenkov, Caretaker Minister of Health

Nenkov was born on March 15, 1969 in Sofia, Bulgaria. 

He graduated from Sofia Medical University in 1995. Nenkov has completed specializations in anesthesiology and intensive care.

Miroslav Nenkov has worked at the University Hospital Tsaritsa Yoanna and at Lozenetz Hospital as a donor coordinator, as well as at Sveta Anna Hospital in Sofia.

Since 2009, Nenkov has been a donor coordinator and Acting Head of the Department of anesthesiology, emergency medicine and intensive therapy at the Military Medical Academy in Sofia.

In the period March - May 2013, Nenkov was a Deputy Minister of Health in the caretaker government of Marin Raykov.


Yordan Bakalov, Caretaker Minister of Interior

Bakalov was born on September 1, 1960 in Asenovgrad.

He graduated at the University of Chemical Technology and Metallurgy, Sofia in 1987, and at the Technical University in Plovdiv in 1998. In 2009, Bakalov got his PhD in the 'Organization and management outside the material production sphere' - National security.

Since 2012 he has been an Associate Professor and a lecturer at New Bulgarian University, Sofia and at the College of Economics and Administration, Plovdiv.

Yordan Bakalov has been a member of Parliament in the 38th, 39th, 40th and 41st National Assembly.



Rumen Porozhanov, Caretaker Minister of Finance

Rumen Porozhanov was born on August 17, 1964.

A Master in Agricultural Business, Economy and Management and also in Defense Industry, Economy and Management.

Porozhanov has worked at the Ministry of Finance for a long time. Between 1992 and 1995 he was an expert at the Financing of Special Activities Department overseeing the financial situation of companies at the defense sector.

From August 2001 he headed the Finance, Agriculture, Trade and Services Department at the Finance Ministry. 
From 2001 to 2009 he headed the Real Sector Department at the ministry. August 2009 to August 2011 he was Chief of Staff at the Finance Ministry after becoming the Chief Executive of the State Fund Agriculture, a position he held until September 2013. Since February 2014 he has presided over the Governing Council at the Center for Strategic Analysis, Financing and European Funds. 

Between 1993 and 2014 he took different managerial posts in the real and public-sector economy. 
He was the Chairman of the Board of Directors at Arsenal JSC in Kazanlak (1993-1999) and Chairman of the Governing Council of Bulgartabac Holding JSC (2001-2005).

Poroznahov was also a member of the Governing Council at Sofia Tobacco Company (2005-2011), and chaired the Board of Directors at Project Company Oil Pipeline Burgas-Alexandroupoli.

Since September 2009, he has chaired the Supervisory Board at the Bulgarian Development Bank.

Daniel Mitov, Caretaker Minister of Foreign Affairs

Born in 1977, he graduated from the Sofia University "Kliment Ohridski''.

Mitov has taken part in international exchange programmes of Marshall Memorial Fund and the „Programme des personnalites d’avenir” of the French foreign ministry.

In 2002 Mitov worked in the Political Academy for Central and Southeast Europe. In 2006 he became executive director of Bulgaria's Democracy Foundation and later he became deputy-chairman of right-wing party Democrats for Strong Bulgaria (DSB).

Since the autumn of 2010 he has worked for the US National Democratic Institute - initially in Iraq. As an official NDI representative he has worked also in Libya, Yemen, Tunisia, among others.

Nikolina Angelkova, Caretaker Minister of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications

Angelkova was born on November 30, 1979. 

She is an alumna of the Harvard Business School – Boston, USA. Angelkova has obtained a master's degree in Law at the University of National and World Economy, Sofia. She has competed specializations at a number of international universities.

In the period 2010-2011, Angelkova was head of a unit at the Ministry of Regional Development. In 2011, she became a member of the Board of directors at the Road Infrastructure Agency. Angelkova was a deputy Minister of Regional Development until 2013.

In March 2014, Angelkova was chosen as one of the 214 Young Global Leaders by the World Economic Forum.

She is fluent in English, Spanish, Italian, French and Russian.

Rumyana Kolarova, Caretaker Minister of Education and Science

Kolarova holds Philosophy and Sociology degrees from the Sofia University St Kliment Ohridski.

She has specialized at the London School of Economics and Political Science, at the New School for Social Research (New York, US) and at Florence's European University Institute.

Kolarova teaches Comparative Politics at the Sofia University and is the author of over 50 scientific publications.

She is also the Chair of the Center for Women's Studies and Policies. 

On December 12, 2013 she was appointed the President's Secretary for Civil Society Relations.


Velizar Shalamanov, Caretaker Minister of Defence

Velizar Shalamanov was born on December 24, 1961.

He has a master's degree in radio electronics from the National Military University in Dolna Mitropolia, a master's degree in management and organisation of operational and tactical intelligence from the Sofia Military Academy in Sofia and a doctoral degree in cybernetics from the Kiev University.

Between 1984 and 1998 he served as an army officer and as a head of the intelligence sector in the general staff.

Between 1998 and 2001 he was a deputy defence minister. In 2001-2009 he worked as an advisor to the chairperson of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences on national security and defence. Shalamanov also taught in various Bulgarian universities.

He has been director of various NGO's and NATO consulting agencies and a member of various committees. 
He is fluent in English and Russian.


Martin Ivanov, Caretaker Minister of Culture

Martin Ivanov has master's degrees in history and law, and a doctoral degree in history from the Bulgarian Academy Of Science (BAS). 

He has worked in the BAS and teaches economic history in the Sofia University and the Higher School of Insurance and Finance. Ivanova has 150 scientific publications and seven treatises in economic and social policies in Bulgaria from the 1970's onwards.

Between 2011 and 2013 he was head of the state Archives agency.

Since October 2013 Ivanov was appointed Presidential secretary of culture, education and national identity.

He is fluent in English and Russian.


Evgenia Radanova, Caretaker Minister of Youth and Sport

Evgenia Radanova is born on November 4, 1977.

She has a degree from the National Sports Academy.

Radanova is the first, and so far only, Bulgarian athlete to participate both in winter and summer Olympics.

She has medals from the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City and Turin for 500 m in short track. She is also a seven-times world champion in short track and has 37 gold medals.

Radanova is also a member of the Bulgarian Olympic Committee, the Bulgarian Skating Federation and several other sports federations.

She is fluent in English and Italian.


Vasil Grudev, Caretaker Minister of Agriculture and Foods

Vasil Grudev was born on May 5, 1980.

He has a master's degree in law from the university Franche-Comt?, Besancon and a specialisation in European cooperation in the Wageningen Business School, Netherlands.

Between 2006 and 2013 he has held various positions in the State Fund Agriculture.

For a brief period in 2013 he was also the executive director of the State Fund Agriculture.

He is fluent in French and English.



Svetlana Zhekova, Caretaker Minister of Environment and Waters

Svetlana Zhekova was born on February 1, 1967.

Has master's degrees in French Philology and International Economic Relations and specialisations in International Relations with the EU in the American University, School of International Services, Washington DC and Global Monitoring and Environment Quality and Organisation, System and Activities in the UN, United Nations University in Tokyo.

Zhekova has a worked in the Ministry of Environment and Waters. Since 2004 she has held various positions in Bulgaria's EU delegation.

She is fluent in French, English and Russian.

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