Bulgarian Politics: Who are the New Ministers in the Caretaker Government and When are Next Elections
President Rumen Radev signed a decree on the dissolution of the 47th National Assembly on August 2, 2022. The head of state has scheduled elections for the National Assembly on October 2, 2022.
With another decree, the president appointed a caretaker government from August 2, 2022.
Who are the caretaker ministers?
Galab Donev - Acting Prime Minister
Donev was born in 1967 in Sofia. Graduated from the 35th Russian Language High School in Sofia. He obtained a master's degree in "Finance" at University of National and World Economy and in law at "Angel Kanchev" University of Ruse. He specialized in "Business and Management" at UNWE.
From 2005 to 2006, he was acting Chief Secretary of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy. From 2007 to 2009, he was a member of the Supervisory Board of the National Insurance Institute. In 2008, he became the chairman of the Supervisory Board of the National Institute for Conciliation and Arbitration.
From 2001 to 2007, Galab Donev was the director of the "Working Conditions and Crisis Management" Directorate at the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy.
From 2007 to 2009, he was the executive director of the Executive Agency "Main Labor Inspection", and in 2009 he became the deputy chairman of the State Agency "State Reserve and Wartime Stocks".
From 2014 to 2016, he was Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy. Among the positions he held after that were Deputy Director of the Directorate "Administrative and Information Services" and Deputy Director of the Directorate "Internal Audit" of the Ministry of Defense.
He holds the position of Acting Minister of Labor and Social Policy in the Caretaker Government appointed by President Rumen Radev in January 2017. From May to December 2021, Galab Donev is Deputy Prime Minister for Economic and Social Policies and Acting Minister of Labor and Social Policy in the two caretaker governments appointed by President Rumen Radev.
He was appointed as the Secretary for Social Policies and Health Care of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria by Decree No. 120 of May 9, 2017. In the second term of the President, he was appointed Secretary of Social Policies and Health by Decree No. 19 of January 22, 2022. He was reappointed to the position of Secretary of Demography and Social Policies by Decree No. 97 of March 30, 2022.
Lazar Lazarov - acting deputy prime minister for social policies and acting minister of labor and social policy
Lazar Lazarov was born on March 18, 1970 in Sofia. He graduated from UNWE, majoring in "Macroeconomics" in 1996. He has a Master’s in Economics. He also completed a course on "Monitoring and evaluation of social programs and projects according to the methodology of the International Labor Organization".
Since 1995, he has successively held consulting, expert and management positions in the National Employment Service (currently the Employment Agency), the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce, the Economic and Social Council, the National Assembly, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy and the Working Conditions Fund .
He was an advisor to the Minister of Labor and Social Policy from August 2005 to November 2007, and from November 2007 to July 2009 Lazar Lazarov was the Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Policy. From August 2009 to June 2013, he was the chief expert assistant to the Commission on Labor and Social Policy in the National Assembly. In the periods June 2013 - August 2014, November 2014 - May 2016, February 2017 - May 2017, as well as from the end of September 2017 until now, Lazar Lazarov is the Deputy Minister of Labor and Social Affairs politics.
He chaired a number of tripartite bodies for social dialogue in the field of the labor market, labor migration and labor mobility, policies for people with disabilities, equal opportunities for men and women, etc.
Hristo Alexiev - acting deputy prime minister for economic policies and acting minister of transport and communications
Hristo Alexiev holds a master's degree in "International Economic Relations" from UNWE and a bachelor's degree in political science from "Paisiy Hilendarski" University of Plovdiv. He holds a number of additional qualifications and certificates in the field of economics, management and digitization from Imperial College London, Oxford University Business School and other international educational institutions.
Over the years, he has held positions as an economic expert and consultant on the project for the construction of an Intermodal Container Terminal in Plovdiv, a member of the board of directors of the Public Access Zone in Port of Burgas, chairman of the board of directors of Port of Burgas Ltd. and chairman of the management board and deputy general director of the National Railway Infrastructure Company.
He was the Minister of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications in the interim government appointed by President Rumen Radev in January 2017. From September to December 2021, he is again the Minister of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications in the interim government appointed by the head of state.
From March 2022, he holds the position of economic secretary to the president.
Ivan Demerdzhiev for acting Deputy Prime Minister for Public Order and Security and acting Minister of Internal Affairs
Ivan Demerdzhiev is a lawyer with over 20 years of experience. He was born in 1975 in Plovdiv. In 2001, he graduated with a master's degree in law at the Paisii Hilendarski University of Plovdiv.
Since February 2007, he has been a partner and manager of the Demerdzhiev, Petrov and Baev Law Firm. Since June 2016, he has been a member of the Bar Council of the Plovdiv Bar Association, and from July 2016 to February 2019, he was its secretary. In February 2019, he became the chairman of the Bar Association - Plovdiv. He left his post after being appointed Deputy Minister of Justice in the interim government appointed by President Rumen Radev in May 2021.
In October of the same year, by decree of the President, he was appointed acting Minister of Justice.
After the end of the mandate, he returned to his law practice. As a lawyer, he is known for his strong public positions. He takes an active part in the discussion of the important topics in the sphere of justice.
Atanas Pekanov - official deputy prime minister for management of European funds
Atanas Pekanov is an economist at the Austrian Institute for Economic Research (WIFO) in Vienna, Austria, and a lecturer at the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Wien). He previously worked at the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany. He holds a BA in Economics from the University of Vienna in Economics and Business and a MA in Economic Policy from University College London.
He was Deputy Prime Minister for the management of European funds from May to December 2021 in the two interim governments appointed by President Rumen Radev.
He has a PhD in Economics at the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU Wien) with a focus on the topics of Monetary and Fiscal Policy. He was twice selected as a scholarship holder of the Bulgarian National Bank (2015, 2019). In 2019 won a Fulbright scholarship and attended Harvard University's economics department, where he worked on his dissertation in the field of monetary policy.
Rositsa Atanasova Velkova-Zheleva - Acting Minister of Finance
Rositsa Velkova was born in 1972 in Sofia. Схе obtained a master's degree in finance at the University of National and World Economy.
In 1993, сhe started working in the Ministry of Finance (MoF) and has 28 years of professional experience in the MoF. From 2001 to 2017, сhe was the head of the "Sustainable Economic Development" department in the "State Expenditure" Directorate, with the field of activity budget financing of primary budget managers. In the period 2000-2001, сhe was the deputy chairman of the then existing "State Agency for Insurance Supervision".
In 2008-2009, сhe represented the Republic of Bulgaria in the group of financial experts and in the Financial Commission, which discuss budgetary, financial and administrative issues of UNESCO.
In the period November 2017 - April 2021, she was the Deputy Minister of Finance, from April 2021 to December 2021, she served as the Director of the State Expenditure Directorate in the Ministry of Finance, and from December 2021 to the present, she was the Deputy Minister of finance.
Dimitar Stoyanov - Acting Minister of Defense
Dimitar Stoyanov was born on October 28, 1968 in Svilengrad.
In 1986, he graduated from the Mathematics High School in Haskovo. In the period 1986-1991, he continued his education at the Higher Air Force School - Dolna Mitropolia. In 2001, he graduated from the Command and Staff Academy of the Military Academy "G. S. Rakovski". He is also a graduate of Maxwell Air Force College, USA.
Dimitar Stoyanov began his military career as a technician in a fighter aviation regiment in Uzundzhovo. He passed through a number of command-engineer positions, the last of which was deputy commander of aviation equipment and armament at the Third Fighter Air Base "Graf Ignatievo". Since 2009, he has been the chief of staff at the airbase. During the period 2013 - 2016, he held various positions in the Air Force Command of the Republic of Bulgaria, the last of which was Chief of Staff of the Air Force.
By Decree No. 44 of January 23, 2017, he was appointed as the President's Chief Secretary. In the second term of President Radev, he was appointed as the Chief Secretary by Decree No. 10 of January 22, 2022.
Asen Medzhidiev - Acting Minister of Health
Dr. Asen Medzhidiev was born in 1968. He graduated in medicine from the Higher Medical Institute in Sofia in 1994. At the beginning of his professional development, he worked as a resident doctor in the Department of Pulmonary Diseases of the Fifth City Clinical Hospital. In the period 1995-2011, he was an ENT specialist and bronchoscopist at the Otorhinolaryngology and Maxillofacial Surgery Clinic of St. Anna UMBAL. In 2010, he also completed higher education in Health Management at the Medical University in Sofia.
Since 2012, he has been part of the team of N.I. Pirogov UMBALSM. He created and led the first department of ENT diseases in the medical institution and initiated the National "Pirogov Children's Health" program for conducting highly specialized preventive examinations in the country.
Dr. Medjidiev has a number of publications on the subject of ENT and bronchology in Bulgarian and international publications. He takes part in forums and congresses in the country and abroad. He has specializations in Germany, Croatia and Switzerland. He is a member of the Bulgarian Medical Association (BMA), and since 2018 he has been the chairman of the Board of the Metropolitan Medical College of the BLA.
Ivan Shishkov - Acting Minister of Regional Development and Public Works
Ivan Shishkov was born on September 14, 1963 in Sofia. He graduated with a master's degree in "Architecture" in 1990 at VIAS Sofia.
Arch. Shishkov worked as a designer at "Interproekt" and "Sofproekt". In the period 1992-2000 has held the position of chief architect of the Dragoman Municipality since 2002 until 2008 - chief architect of the "Bankya" District in the Capital Municipality (SO), and since 2008 until 2021 was the chief architect of the "Triaditsa" District - SO.
Since 1996 until 2006 He is a member of the Municipal Expert Council on Territorial Planning.
Since 2007 until 2015 is an expert in the Committee on Territorial Planning and Housing Policy at the SOS.
During the two caretaker governments appointed by President Rumen Radev in 2021, he was an adviser and deputy minister in the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works. To date, he works as an architect.
Sasho Penov - Acting Minister of Education and Science
Prof. Dr. Sasho Penov holds a Master of Laws from the Faculty of Law (FoL) of Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski" (1986). Lecturer at the Faculty of Law since 1987 (assistant), 2000 (associate professor), 2012 (professor) in the disciplines of financial law, tax law, international tax law at the Faculty of Law. Doctor of Laws (1996).
He specialized at the University of Hamburg, Germany (with a Weizsäcker scholarship and a master's degree in law at the same university 1991-1992), at the International Center for Personnel Training at the OECD - Vienna, Austria (1993); at the University of Athens, Greece (1995); at the University of Saarbrücken, Germany (2001, 2004); in the USA (2002).
He was the head of the Department of Administrative and Legal Sciences (2010-2018), Dean of the Faculty of Law (2011-2018). He worked as an expert in the Main Directorate of the Tax Administration (1989-1990) and head of the "Tax Agreements" department (1992-1994). He was a member of the Consultative Council on Legislation at the XXIX (2001-2005) and XL (2005-2009) Parliaments. He was a member of the Legal Council under the President of the Republic of Bulgaria and chairman of the Commission for Forgiveness of Uncollectible State Receivables in the period from 2002 to 2011.
He is a lawyer at the Sofia Bar Association since 1994.
Nikolay Milkov - Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs
Nikolay Milkov was born on December 10, 1957 in Sofia.
He graduated from the French High School in Sofia, and received his higher education at the Department of International Relations of the UNWE.
His professional development began in the scientific field, and in 1991 he was awarded the scientific degree of doctor for a dissertation in the field of international relations and recent history.
He started working in the state administration in 1992, initially holding various positions as a civilian employee in the Ministry of Defense. After that, he went to work in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but in 2010, after a competition, he returned to the Ministry of Defense as a permanent secretary.
He has been working at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 1997. In the diplomatic service, he held various positions, including director of the Directorate "Foreign Policy Planning, Information and Coordination", deputy minister of foreign affairs with portfolios of responsibility for European countries, including SEE, and issues of security. In this capacity, he is a member of the Commission for Export Control and secretary of the Interdepartmental Committee for the membership of the Republic of Bulgaria in NATO. He was ambassador of Bulgaria in Romania and Canada, consul general in New York. He is currently Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the French Republic and Principality of Monaco and Permanent Representative to UNESCO.
Krum Zarkov - Acting Minister of Justice
Krum Zarkov was born in 1982 in Sofia.
Graduated from the 9th French Language High School in Sofia. In 2007, he graduated as a master's at the University of Paris 1 "Panthéon - Sorbonne" in the specialty "International Law and Law of International Organizations". In the same year, he received a diploma for a completed course from the Institute of Political Sciences - Paris, France.
From 2007 to 2010, he was engaged in research and scientific activity at the Center for Research and Sciences in the Field of International Public Law of the University Paris 1 "Panthéon - Sorbonne". In 2010, he started working as an inspector - lawyer in the Commission for the establishment of property acquired from criminal activity.
In the 41st and 42nd National Assembly, he worked as a chief expert assistant to the Committee on Internal Security and Public Order. In the period 2014-2016, he was an expert assistant to the member of the European Parliament Georgi Pirinski (Group of Socialists and Democrats).
He has been a Member of Parliament and member of the Committee on Legal Affairs in the 44th, 45th, 46th and 47th National Assembly.
Velislav Minekov - Acting Minister of Culture
Velislav Minekov is a professor at the National Academy of Arts (NAA). He completed his education at the National Academy of Arts and specialized in Hamburg, Germany. He is a teacher of sculpture, metal design, artistic painting, artistic stonework and restoration in Bulgaria, Germany, Turkey and the UAE. He is represented with monumental and cavalcade works in Bulgaria, USA, Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Korea, Spain, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Singapore, China, Morocco, Lebanon, Bosnia, Serbia, Brazil and United Arab Emirates.
He has been awarded as a participant in numerous international symposia, competitions and exhibitions. He is a member of creative unions in Europe and organizations supporting the protection of cultural heritage.
Prof. Minekov is a civil and political activist. Participates in initiatives to change laws in the field of culture, museum work, legal status of collectors and copyright.
He was Minister of Culture from May to December 2021 in the two caretaker governments appointed by President Rumen Radev.
Rositsa Karamfilova-Blagova - Acting Minister of Environment and Water
Dr. Eng. Rositsa Karamfilova is an expert with many years of experience in the field of environmental management. For more than 17 years, she has worked in the system of the Ministry of Environment and Water (MoEW), successively holding expert and management positions - from junior expert to executive director of the Environmental Executive Agency (EEA).
She holds a Master's degree in "Ecology and Environmental Protection" from the Chemical-Technological and Metallurgical University (CTMU) in Sofia. She successfully defended her doctoral degree on the topic "Investigating the possibility of obtaining biogas through anaerobic digestion of some non-traditional waste bioproducts" at CTMU, where she also worked as a part-time lecturer.
In 2005, he began her work experience at the Environmental Protection Agency of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science and for 11 years held various expert positions in the field of waste management and monitoring, environmental indicators, quality control for greenhouse gas inventory and national coordinator (NFP) at the European environment agency. Since 2016, she has held leadership positions at the units for strategic planning and international programs and projects in the Ministry of Education and Culture.
She has been an Executive Director of the Environment Executive Agency since April 2021. Member of the Board of Directors of the European Environment Agency. She also has experience of participating in a number of national and international projects in the field of the environment.
Yavor Gechev - Acting Minister of Agriculture
Yavor Gechev was born on June 10, 1978 in Plovdiv. He is an engineer-agronomist by education.
In 2001, he graduated from the Plovdiv Agricultural University. He has a master's degree in "Plant Protection". There are several specializations - professional qualifications in "Management Skills", "Political Management", "Public Policies" and "Political Management" at the New Bulgarian University, the Bulgarian School of Politics and the Council of Europe /Strasbourg/.
The first years of his professional biography are those of a farmer. After that, he began to gain serious professional experience in the State Fund "Agriculture", he started as an expert and reached the position of head of the Regional Payment Agency - Plovdiv.
Since 2013, he has been a deputy in the 42nd National Assembly. In the same year, he was appointed Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Food.
Yavor Gechev is the third chairman of the National Union of Agricultural Cooperatives in Bulgaria. He was elected to this post on 28 June 2016 and held it until May 2021, when he was invited and subsequently re-occupied the post of Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Food and Forestry in the two caretaker governments appointed by President Rumen Radev.
Nikola Stoyanov - Acting Minister of Economy and Industry
Nikola Stoyanov was born in 1976 in Sofia. He graduated in Law at the Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski". He graduated in the master's programs "European and International Commercial Law" and "German Law for Foreigners" at the "Ludwig-Maximilian" University of Munich. He has experience in the development of start-up companies, support for small and medium enterprises and investments.
In the private sector, he founded, managed and supported numerous companies. In a period of 8 years, he led a company that is the exclusive partner for South-Eastern Europe of export organizations, Agencies for supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and Investment Agencies from Europe, Asia and the USA. Participated as a manager or expert in more than 1000 projects, as a strategic partner of foreign companies in their entry into Eastern European markets, search for new suppliers, restructuring and investments.
In the public sector, he held the positions of adviser in the Ministry of Economy, as well as executive director and deputy executive director of the Executive Agency "Promotion of Small and Medium Enterprises". In 2021, he was appointed chairman of the Board of Directors of "Vazovsky Machine Building Plants" Ltd., participating in the management of the company until the middle of 2022.
Rosen Hristov - Acting Minister of Energy
Rosen Hristov holds a master's degree in international economic relations from the University of California, USA. He has many years of experience in the energy sector, holding senior positions in international companies. Internationally recognized specialist in acquisitions and restructuring of enterprises, solving crisis situations, strategies and development.
He worked for the Italian energy company Enel, responsible for the restructuring and integration of the acquired large-scale energy subsidiaries in Greece, France and Russia. After that, he was regional director for Eastern Europe and Latin America at the Dutch company for repair and maintenance of energy assets "Ditzman" and led the acquisition of "Energoremont Holding" in Bulgaria, of which he later became the chairman of the management board.
In recent years, he has been investing in start-up companies with a focus on green technologies. He speaks 4 languages fluently and is a member of MENSA.
Alexander Pulev - Acting Minister of Innovation and Growth
Alexander Pulev was born on February 5, 1981 in Plovdiv. He holds an MA in Finance from the University of Oxford and a BA in Information Systems and Finance from the University of Maine, USA.
His professional career passed through "UniCredit", where he was director of "Investment Banking" for four years; The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), where he was chief banker for six years; Transaction Advisory Manager at Ernst & Young.
He has worked in international companies such as Citigroup Global Markets, Brown Brothers Harriman and General Electric.
Alexander Pulev has many years of experience in project finance and in structuring transactions ranging from equity investment to syndication of hybrid and senior debt. He managed a portfolio of Bulbank start-up companies and was coordinator of the EBRD's venture capital program for the Balkans.
He was Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications in the interim government appointed by President Rumen Radev for the period from September to December 2021.
Ilin Dimitrov - Acting Minister of Tourism
Ilin Dimitrov was born in 1983. He completed his secondary education at the "Geo Milev" German language high school in Dobrich.
He holds 3 bachelor's degrees from various universities and colleges (in hotel and restaurant management, business administration, marketing and management), a master's degree ("Business Administration") and a doctoral degree in Tourism.
He has been working in the tourism sector since 2000, having passed through various positions. In the period 2020-2021, he was the chairman of the Varna Tourist Chamber.
A teacher for 11 years at the College of Tourism-Varna and director of the "Careers, Marketing and Entrepreneurship" center at IU-Varna. From 2008 to 2021, he was engaged in entrepreneurial activity in parallel.
In the 47th National Assembly, he was the chairman of the permanent Commission on Tourism.
Vesela Lecheva - Acting Minister of Youth and Sports
Vesela Lecheva was born on May 20, 1964 in Veliko Tarnovo. She graduated from the National Sports Academy with a PhDr in Sports Sciences.
Her achievements in sports shooting place her among the most significant Bulgarian athletes of all time - silver medals from the Olympic Games in Seoul (1988) and in Barcelona (1992), five-time world champion, eight-time European champion, four-time winner of World Cup, multiple world record holder. In 2007, in Munich, she was chosen as the archer of the 20th century. For the top European, world and Olympic results achieved in sports shooting, Vesela Lecheva was declared an honorary citizen of Veliko Tarnovo.
She was a Member of Parliament in the 39th, 40th, 44th and 45th National Assembly. In the period 2005-2009, she was the chairman of the State Agency for Youth and Sports. Under her leadership, the institution became the engine of numerous programs aimed at access to sports for school children, as well as for the support and development of young sports talents.
Georgi Todorov - Acting Minister of e-Government
Georgi Todorov has a master's degree in law. His professional career spans across the Ministry of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications, the Metropolitan Municipality and private business.
Over the years, he was Minister and Deputy Minister of Transport, Information Technology and Communications in four governments, Chairman of the Board of Directors of DP "Port Infrastructure", Chairman of the Board of Directors of "Information Service" JSC, Chairman of the Board of Directors of " Bulgarian Posts Ltd., Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of Port of Burgas, member of the Board of Directors of Bulgaria Air Ltd., etc.
Georgi Todorov has many years of expert and management experience, he was responsible for both the "Information Technologies and Communications" sector and the "Transport" sector, as well as the digitization process.
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