Over BGN 60 mln poured in Turkish economy for train carriage

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Over BGN 60 mln poured in Turkish economy for train carriage

Мнениеот Administrator » Пет Сеп 27, 2013 11:06 am

Over BGN 60 mln poured in Turkish economy for train carriages without clear expedience of the deal: former Transport Minister

15 September 2013 | 16:47

Petar Mutafchiev, Minister of Transport in the government of the Triple Coalition and MP in the 42nd National Assembly in an interview for FOCUS News Agency

FOCUS: Mr. Mutafchiev, the Bulgarian State Railways (BDZ) are with new leadership. How would you comment the first steps it has taken and what are your executions?
Petar Mutafchiev: The new management of BDZ are people from the system, good experts with prestige, who receive support from most of the BDZ workers, I am sure. I hope they will undertake urgent actions for financial stabilization of the BDZ and then to improve the services. They have already started working in this direction to provide better service to the clients of the Bulgarian State Railways – clean carriages, repairs of the waiting rooms at stations etc. Let’s hope that these first efforts they make will achieve the expected results, i.e. clean carriages, better service, increase in the number of transportations, and of course stable system of the heavy-freight services.
On the other hand I think that the new leadership has to be more efficient in paying off to its creditors. This is very important moment. It was big mistake of the then management of the BDZ in the past three years to destroy the prestige of BDZ as reliable partner to the credit institutions. You know that over BGN 60 million was spent to buy carriages from Turkey, provided that such carriages had already been agreed, and they did not take them. I am talking about a previous deal that was very widely discussed. They were Swiss carriages that could be put into action, and instead of paying those BGN 60 million they gave to the Turkish economy. I do not know what the point of such a deal was; perhaps prosecutors should consider and ask for appropriateness and whether it violated the public interest. Let us first the management consider how to pay the maturity on loans of the Bulgarian State Railways to restore its confidence internationally. This is perhaps the first pressing safety step that must be taken.

FOCUS: Negotiations with the creditors of the Bulgarian State Railways were resumed. Where could possibly the new leadership to find the money for the amounts due?
Petar Mutafchiev: I think at the moment they have some of the money. Of course, they need to use the subsidy from the last translation that has to be done for the last quarter, for this to happen. I think that appropriate legislative changes should be taken to allow it to be realized. The restructuring of BDZ and transfer of ownership of some of the wagons to the Public Transportation created difficulties under the European legislation so that the subsidy is needed. What I am talking about - before the government of Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria these carriages were owned by the State-owned Railways and the Public Transportation Service paid rent to BDZ and BDZ paid off its debt to the creditors. This was a working system.

FOCUS: Automotive industry in Bulgaria expressed concern over slow election of head of the Automobile Administration. Do they have reason to worry that the election of Automobile Administration director is delayed?
Petar Mutafchiev: Industry organizations have good reasons for concern. Automobile Administration is part of the Ministry of Transport and there are many problems in road transport. You see, that the issue of transport to Turkey is not yet resolved, and there is tension on the control that the Turkish authorities imposed on our carriers. When there is no clear management of the Automobile Administration it certainly raises concerns.

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source: Focus
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