Bulgaria’s Ombudsperson Maya Manolova filed a complaint with the Constitutional Court against the requirements of the new Fuel Act, Manolova's office said on 8th of January, reports BNT.
The ombudsperson is firm that they not only strike a heavy blow against small traders and fuel carriers but also against Bulgarian citizens in their capacity as consumers because the bankruptcy of small petrol stations will lead to restricting competition and strengthening monopoly.
The law provides for exorbient requirements for high registered capital of BGN 20,000 for a small gas station, BGN 1,000,000 for the provisionally called "wholesale trader", absurd requirements for size of warehouses, capacity of vessels, number of bottles for liquefied gas. This is a law that pushes small traders into a corner, the Ombudsman wrote.
In the complaint to the Cinstitutional Court, Manolova noted that by imposing difficult to enforce and disproportionately high financial thresholds and requirements in the form of restrictions in the administrative regulation of activities related to oil and petroleum products, the legislator practically limits the range of entities, which can carry out these activities and thus "naturally" creates conditions for restricting competition and for monopoly.
Manolova is sure that the changes will lead to an increase in the price of fuels and that it will make the access for Bulgarian citizens in small and remote settlements difficult because the big chains have no economic interest to make their sites there.
In the coming days, the Ombudsperson will refer two more laws to the Constitutional court - texts in the Water Supply and Sewerage Services Act, which refer to the single price of water and sewerage services within a single territory and in the State Budget Law, which cut off the right of retired civil servants to occupy a civil service, the statement said.