Good evening on Monday, the week that will likely decide if Bulgaria has a third national election this year. On Wednesday, the six parties in the National Assembly will choose whether to support the cabinet of Prime Minister-nominee Plamen Nikolov from the There is such a people (TISP) party. A series of scandals caused by public outings of key proposed ministers and the TISP leadership, however, might see the Nikolov cabinet fail to secure needed approval in Parliament.
TISP cabinet loses support
One by one, the parties on whose support Mr Trifonov's faction relies to pass the proposed cabinet of Plamen Nikolov, withdrew their backing. Or they said they would only do so if TISP changes several minister-nominees.
The Green Movement, part of the Democratic Bulgaria bloc, first said it would not approve Mr Nikolov's cabinet over the weekend, followed by Maya Manolova's Stand up BG faction on Monday. The rest of Democratic Bulgaria is likely to follow suit, especially after fresh attacks from Mr Trifonov over a series of Facebook statuses on Monday. BSP demanded that TISP withdraw the nomination of constitutionalist Petar Iliev for Internal Minister in order for the cabinet to receive socialist backing. Mr Iliev, whose name was down to be Prime Minister until the last moment, was accused of plagiarism. Yet, instead of being discounted altogether, he became TISP's Internal Minister nomination.
Businessman Spas Rusev buys Bulsatcom, Bulgaria's largest telecom
Investors led by businessman and former largest shareholder in Vivacom Spas Rusev have finalized a deal acquiring Bulsatcom, Bulgaria's largest satellite television, internet and mobile services company. This was announced by the company officially behind the deal, Viva Corporate Bulgaria, on Monday. It is still unclear whether the deal has been approved by the Commission for the Protection of Competition (CPC) and its exact transaction value. But, according to Capital Weekly sources, it is in the range of 120-130 million euro. The other candidate to purchase the telecom was the Czech PFF group that also owns the Telenor mobile network.
Bulgartransgaz fined 260,000 euro for circumventing state regulation when building TurkStream
State owned natural gas transmission and storage company Bulgartransgaz has been fined over 260,000 euro by the Commission for energy and water regulation (KEVR) for taking out loans and signing contracts for the construction of the TurkStream (known as Balkan Stream in its Bulgarian section) gas pipeline without seeking the approval of KEVR. The Commission announced its decision on its website on Monday and follows an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the rushed construction of Balkan Stream, ordered by KEVR head Ivan Ivanov in April. The report from the enquiry also states that the construction incurred 1,25 billion euro of losses to Bulgartransgaz's finances.