Anything is possible. These words by chief health inspector Angel Kunchev were in response to a specific question from journalists - regarding the likelihood of extending the new anti-epidemic measures. At the same time, they're a great summary of the government's current response to coronavirus.
A week ago, the situation was "under control", according to authorities. By Thursday, the narrative took a 180-degree turn as health authorities announced new lockdown measures for restaurants, cinemas, museums, theaters, galleries and entertainment venues, and shopping centers starting this Monday, pledging that it was only for 10 days. Over the weekend, the assurances have disappeared, and now nobody knows how long the lockdowns will last. In the chaos, hotels are now asking to be under lockdown as well - so that they can apply for state aid. Given that restaurants, spas, sports, and recreation areas are closed, and guests are fed in their rooms, no one will visit their establishments, according to hotel owners.
Shipka tunnel will cost at least 358 million levs
Four local consortiums have submitted price offers in the tender procedure for the construction of the tunnels underneath Shipka peak in Stara Planina mountain near Gabrovo, the Road Infrastructure Agency announced. The lowest offered price for the 10.6-km project (of which 7.6 km is new construction) is 358 million levs or 183 million euro with VAT. The tunnels - five in total, are intended to create a fast connection between Bulgaria's north and south. It has turned into a lengthy undertaking - the contract for its extended conceptual design was signed in 2014 but construction is expected to finish, optimistically, in 2025.
Five of six espionage suspects detained permanently
On Friday, the State Prosecution announced six people have been indicted for spying for Russia. One detainee confessed and was released on bail the same day. A hearing in the Sofia Military Court lasted until 5 AM on Monday and finally decided that five of the initial six people detained will remain permanently in custody. According to the authorities, the alleged spies were trying to get information about NATO's plans. The prosecution claims that they have gathered sufficient evidence against the "resident" - Ivan Iliev, former head of military intelligence, whose wife has dual citizenship, and who was a liaison with the Russian embassy.
CEOs in IT: A steady demand for services kept the growing trend
Sales headcount is on the rise but only a third of IT firms reached their goals for 2020, show results from a survey conducted by sales development agency Out2Bound among 98 IT directors in the country. Europe & North America account for the majority of external markets that respondents listed, and Brexit influenced a small percentage of surveyed firms.