On Tuesday outgoing e-Governance Minister Bozhidar Bozhanov told Dnevnik.bg that the launch of the Bulgarian electronic identification system has been scheduled for the end of the year and won't be impacted by political events, as all processes have already been set in motion . Electronic identification will be done via a mobile device app and a scannable part of the personal ID of each citizen, which will allow the state to directly identify the individual using a service. Currently, such services are offered only through an electronic signature or a personal identification code. In other news:
UniCredit Bulbank revises economic prognosis, foresees GDP growth of 2.7% instead of 1.4%
Despite the impact of the war in Ukraine and the risks associated with it, the performance of the Bulgarian economy in the first quarter of the year made UniCredit Bulbank's economic analysis team revise its prognosis for the growth of the country's GDP from 1.4 percent in April to 2.7 percent now. The bank's economists expect a slight contraction of the economy in Q2 of this year, to be followed by a slight growth in the third quarter, when the government measures that aim at mitigating the effects of high inflation ought to have kicked in. Growth will also be influenced by continued wage increases in some sectors of the economy where the labor shortage is most acute. As for GDP growth in 2023, the bank's experts revised down their forecast to 2 percent, from the 3.5 percent they expected in April. This decline is mainly due to the expected higher food prices.
Transport Ministry to put away 1.7 bln BGN for new trains, receives 32 offers
After the first-of-a-kind preliminary market consultation for new trains for the Bulgarian State Railways (BDZ) was completed, five procedures for a total of 1.7 billion BGN are to be announced, the Ministry of Transport said on Tuesday. By 30 June the institution had received 32 proposals for all five calls it had launched. Some of the world's largest manufacturers and suppliers of rolling stock and on-board equipment sent their indicative proposals, including Alstom, CAF, Hyundai Rotem, PESA Bydgoszsz, Siemens Mobility, Skoda Transportation, Stadler Rail, FPS Poznań Fabryka Pojazdow Szynowych, KONCAR-Electric vehicles Inc., Thales, Talgo, Express Service, Vossloh Locomotives GmbH, CZ LOKO a.s. and CRRC Corporation Limited. It is expected that by mid-2026 Bulgaria will have a completely renewed, state-of-the-art railway fleet.
Covid-19 infections on the rise in 9nine districts, three enter the "yellow" zone
Three districts in the country are now in the so-called yellow Covid-19 zone, where the number of officially registered new infections is between 100 and 250 people per 100,000 population over a period of two weeks, the Health Ministry announced. The areas with the highest number of new cases are Sofia-city, Varna and Burgas. Six other regions recorded twice as many new infections in the past 14 days compared to the previous two-week period - Blagoevgrad, Dobrich, Pernik, Razgrad, Sofia-region and Stara Zagora.