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265. RWE Is The Strategic Investor For NPP "Belene"

News BG: 2008-10-06

The German energy concern RWE is the strategic investor under the project for a second nuclear power plant in Bulgaria - Belene. This announced the minister of economy and energy Peter Dimitrov.

The giant has received more points than the Belgian company Electrabel on the set by the state 10 criteria. However, there is still possibility RWE to participate together with its rival Electrabel. This will be made clear in the following days, pointed out Dimitrov.

The investor gets 49% of the future power plant with RWE claiming participation wit 1.275 billion euro own resources.

The total value of the project is approximately 4 billion euro with the rest of the money having to be paid by the National electric company (NEC), which will be owner of 51% of NPP Belene.

264. 'Rich Daddy' resort for Bulgaria

Wise Property: 2008-10-04

It's so bad that you'll probably be in line to get on a waiting list for its first night of operation. Rich Daddy Resort and Spa has entered the Bulgarian stage, designing to be the nec plus ultra of luxury living complexes on the Black Sea coast. In the style of a 19th-century British mansion library-come-Costa del Sol beach-front bar.

The 189-apartment facility, which will cover 9300 sq m in the area of Krotirya, near Pomorie, is a 16 million leva project of the Russian investor Gudvin OOD, headquartered in Pomorie and managed by Nataliya Lebedeva, real estate weekly Stroitelstvo Gradut reported in its September 29 2008 edition. Bourgas-based construction firm Midiya AD was selected via tender to build the six-sectioned complex.

Midiya is owned and operated by Dimitar Yankiev, one of the 10 finalists in the 2008 Manager of the Year contest, organised by the Bulgarian magazine Manager.

The project was officially presented at BALPEX in spring 2008; Olga Koultishteva is head architect.

Because a Rich Daddy will accept nothing but the best, members of the resort, though technically residents, will be treated with all the pampering of guests at a hotel. Property for the complex has been selected to complement its atmosphere of intimacy and luxe: the slight sloping of the terrain will allow breaking up of the facilities, thus making the lump of a five-star Neoclassical hotel and spa facility seem less oppressive.

In any case, upon waking up in the morning, the first thing that guests will see is water (given that all of the 189 apartments have views of the sea) and other such moneyed clientèle (given that only guests of the hotel and spa will be allowed access to the facility).

And activities. Rich Daddy Resort and Spa is to have inside and outside pools (we're wondering if they'll be Neoclassical as well), a park, playground, mini market, bars and three restaurants none of which will serve cuisine à la French Revolution, but one of which will be a Mongolian barbeque, a first for Bulgaria. And a wine bar, a spa centre, a mud bath, a fitness centre and healthcare facilities.

We'll not go into the type of clientèle that papa sugar aims to attract, save to note that they're the type who see their names in the news every now and again.

263. 180 Million Levs from the Budget Surplus for Health Care

News BG: 2008-10-03

180 million levs from the budget surplus will be allocated to health care. This was announced by Health Care Minister Evgeni Zhelev at the cabinet's session today.

From the entire sum, 100 million will be allotted to the Health Bank.

The other 80 million will be distributed in several major directions. Among them, 15 million go for the auto park of Emergency Help.

According to preliminary calculations 160 new automobiles will be purchased with this money. With the 100 ambulances, which will be given on October 8 to hospitals and which were purchased with funds from the World Bank, maximum mobility of the emergency centers will be provided.

The other use of the money from the budget surplus will be the purchase of therapeutic equipment - hemodialysis machines for two centers in Sofia, one center in Plovdiv and one in Stara Zagora. This will probably also take place in Varna and Pleven as well.

262. EP Deputies: The Next EC Report Will Be Hopeful

News BG: 2008-10-02

We hope that the EC report this fall will contain hopeful data, the difficulties will be overcome and Bulgaria will start to receive money from structure and cohesion funds many times bigger than the per-accession funds.

This was announced by the Chair of the Commission for regional development in the European parliament Herardo Galeot?, who is on a visit in Gorna Oryahovitza.

His delegation visited the Day center for children and adults with disabilities and a purification station for waste water. The two objects are financed with money from the PHARE and ISPA programmes. We must continue defiantly and uncompromisingly the fight against corruption, Galeote added. He announced that the EU will give 1 billion Euro to Bulgaria each year up to 2013.

Our desire is that Bulgaria manages to acquire these money so that it can use them for the economic development of the country and social prosperity of Bulgarians, Galeote said. The visit of his delegation continues in Varna.

261. Last two regional 112 emergency number centres open

Sofia Echo: 2008-10-01

The Ministry of Emergency Situations said on September 30 that the last two remaining regional centres for the Europe-wide emergency number 112 had gone into operation.

With the two centres in Varna and Kurdjali operational, the country had met European Union requirements regarding the country-wide introduction of the general European emergency number, a ministry spokesperson told The Sofia Echo.

The Emergency Situation Ministry said that the idea to introduce the universal emergency number in Bulgaria was launched in 2000. It was a part of Bulgaria's Accession treaty to the EU under the Telecommunications and Information Technologies chapter.

The hotline had to be operational when Bulgaria joined the EU on January 1 2007, but has been repeatedly delayed, prompting the European Commission to launch infringement procedures against Bulgaria on the issue.

In a September 18 decision, the European Commission granted Bulgaria a further three months to introduce the emergency phone number, uniting calls for natural disasters, catastrophes, wrecks, terrorist attacks and emergency medical aid.

Calls to number 112 are currently handled by six regional centres in Sofia, Montana, Bourgas, Rousse, Varna and Kurdjali.

260. Bujar Skendo: Tourism in Albania provides good opportunities for the Bulgarian business

Focus: 2008-09-30

Mr. Ambassador, whats the state of the relations between out two countries?

Bujar Skendo: The relations between Bulgaria and Albania can be characterized as excellent. We are awaiting the formal visit of the Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov in Tirana, which will be the fourth visit of a highest-standing official in Albania. Also, we are expecting Bulgarias ratification of the protocol for the admission of Albania to NATO.

How does Albania moves along the reform path and the process of reaching the standards necessary for membership in NATO and the EU?

Bujar Skendo: Albania is changing with exceptional speed. There is visible progress in our development. It would be enough to remind that Albania was rated in the last report by the World Bank one of the ten countries with quickest reforms regarding creating opportunities for the development of the business. Naturally this reflects the creation of thousands new companies, local and foreign. This new business climate affects the social and economical life in the country. Road infrastructure improves; all villages and coastal tourist zones are linked to the main roads. Albania has become a massive construction site.

Since we are talking about tourism, are there any changes in this field?

Bujar Skendo: Tourism is changing and getting modernized with every passing day. More than 2 Million tourists visited Albania this year. Do you know how many young Bulgarians I met along the South coastline? It was very exciting for me when I was coming along Bulgarian license plates and when we were greeting each other.

Is there any development of the economic relations between Bulgaria and Albania during the last years? What is the growth in trade between the two countries?

Bujar Skendo: There is development in the trade relations. Albania continues to import goods from Bulgaria worth USD 100 Million per year. Albania imports goods in Bulgaria amounting to 15-20 Million. There is some imbalance but this happens in trade relations. The relations are not constant, they change every year.

What is the share of the Bulgarian investments in Albania?

Bujar Skendo: Bulgarian investments in Albania register growth in 2008. We used to have only one investment for fizzy drinks near Tirana before. Now investments grow and according to the recent data there are new Bulgarian companies investing primarily in light and food industry. But I think that Bulgarian businessmen havent make a full use of the tourism field in Albania a field, which is quite attractive and brings good profit to foreign investors. There are a lot of investments in hotels, vacation villages, etc. Bulgarian investors could make benefit of this and present projects to the Albanian government. This would be in their benefit and naturally in the interest of the development of the Albanian tourism.

Are Albanian investors interested in Bulgaria? What are the most attractive sectors for such investments?

Bujar Skendo: Albanian investments in Bulgaria are concentrated mainly in construction. There are several Albanian companies operating in the field, but we can speak about more serious intentions in this field.

259. 208 EU Insurers Work in Bulgaria

News BG: 2008-09-29

The premium income of the Bulgarian insurance market in the first months of the year is 852, 514 million levs, according to data from the Association of insurers in Bulgaria.

Of these, 723,296 million have been collected by general insurance companies and 129,218 million levs - from life insurers.

32,6% of the gross premium income of insurance comes from brokers, BNR announces.

247 are the insurance brokers, registered in Bulgaria. The number of insurance agents is 53 048.

Only in the first half of the year 171 insurance brokers have claimed that they want to practice in Bulgaria. Their total number is 745.

The insurers from the EU, interested in the Bulgarian market, are 26 for the second quarter of 2008 only, while their total number is 208.

258. 2nd Congress on Investment in Tourism Starts in Bulgaria

News BG: 2008-09-27

The National board on tourism and the State agency on tourism organized the second congress of the investors in tourism. It is expected the Bulgarian president Georgi Parvanov to open the forum.

The aim of the forum is the representatives of the legislative and the executive power, chair persons and members of representative tourist organisations, mayors and investors to discuss present issues about the development of the tourist industry in Bulgaria.

Among the main topics during the discussion are the funding of the national advertisement and the international marketing in Bulgaria, the ownership and the management of the tourist attractions. The participants will discuss also the problem with the qualification of the personnel in this sector.

257. New multi-functional building for Evropa Boulevard in Sofia

Wise Property: 2008-09-26

Mapa International is investing in a facility that will feature office and warehouse spaces on Evropa Boulevard across from supermarket Metro-2. The mixed-purpose building will occupy about 3000 sq m out of a 0.8 ha land plot. In addition, the investor plans to construct a multi-functional centre resembling a traditional mall with a total built-up area of 10 000 sq m, Stroitelstvo gradut reported.

The designer is the Plovdiv-based studio ARZH-ART with project manager architect Emil Zhechev.

The office building will feature five levels, one of them subterranean. Two parking lots with a total of 31 car spaces are also envisioned in the plan.

Spokespersons from the architectural studio have revealed that the office building will have a dynamic structure with broken symmetry.

A café, conference halls and offices for clients' meetings will occupy the first level. The upper three levels will be offices for the Mapa International employees.

A warehouse will adjoin the office building at its rear. Its total built-up area will be 1100 sq m. Building will begin as soon as a construction company is selected.

256. Exhibition of The Cyrillic Alphabet in Manhattan For Bulgarian Independence

Sofia Echo: 2008-09-25

The exhibition The Bulgarian letters alphabet of Europe with which the 100-year anniversary of Bulgaria's independence will be marked in New York is from today at the hearth of Manhattan, informed BNR.

In front of the guests at Scandinavian house where the exhibition is placed, the Bulgarian prime minister Sergei Stanishev reminded how memorable for the Bulgarians is the marking of this anniversary.

These are 100 years in which the Bulgarian people walked with dignity, putting a lot of effort, overcoming big difficulties, achieving a lot, stressed PM Stanishev. He expressed his joy that the anniversary is marked not only in Bulgaria but also in the USA.

For me, as it is for all Bulgarians, Bulgaria is where lives even one our fellow countryman, pointed out Stanishev. He expressed confidence that this memorable date would be marked throughout the world where Bulgarians live.

The opening of the exhibition was attended by the Bulgarian deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs Ivaylo Kalfin, the Bulgarian ambassador in USA Elena Poptodorova, foreign diplomats, journalists.

Sergei Stanishev is in New York to take part in the regular 63rd session of the United Nations General Assembly.

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