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Bulgaria Social Ministry Faces BGN 97 M 2009 Deficit

Date: 14.10.2009

The budget deficit of the Bulgarian Labor and Social Policy Ministry is going to reach BGN 97 M by the end of the year. The information was revealed Monday by Social Minister, Totyu Mladenov.

According to Mladenov, about BGN 7,4 M more than what was initially slated has been spent on the so-called Beautiful Bulgaria project.

“I wish to question my predecessor, Emiliya Maslarova, where this money has gone”, Mladenov said, adding the violations of contracts from the project have already been sent to the Prosecutor.

The Minister also said the business police is probing other shady deals involving Maslarova such as the renovations of the center for complex social services in the city of Stara Zagora and the transfer of the Ministry's employees vacation home, near the Golden Sands summer resort, to private owners.

Mladenov further informed that the Social Ministry budget for 2010 will be BGN 385 M less than the 2009 one.

In August, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy launched a full review of the”Beautiful Bulgaria” project.

EUR 71 M is expected to be given to the project in 2009 to over 71 sites in what former Minister Emiliya Maslarova described as one of the best ways of securing employment during the economic crisis. The project provides funding for the repair and construction of social housing, sheltered housing, kindergartens and historical monuments.

A single proposal may receive up to EUR 300 000, of which at least 50 percent must be financed by the contractor. The Beautiful Bulgaria project was founded in 1997, initially to repair old buildings and monuments in Sofia.

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