Minister Pulev in the National Assembly: BBR is not managed effectively, the management is catastrophic
In MIR, in August, we found an open procedure on PVU with "little interest", the minister told the deputies
"The Bulgarian Development Bank is not managed effectively. The bank does not support small and medium-sized enterprises. The management of the bank is disastrous." This was said by the Minister of Innovation and Growth, Alexander Pulev, during a blitz control in the Committee on Economy and Innovation in the National Assembly. He explained that so far the Supervisory Board has duplicated the functions of the Management Board.
The Minister explained that the aim is for the Bulgarian Development Bank to work in close cooperation with business in order to effectively meet its needs. "Instead of inventing new financial instruments in the office, we are talking to the various branches to support them," he added.
According to him, the bank is now operating at a loss. "No vision, no strategy. Everyone justifies themselves with a pre-existing situation," Minister Pulev explained. He stated that at this moment the bank does not work for the people, for the municipalities and does not help to reduce economic disparities. He added that the first audit in the bank's history is currently underway.
Regarding the bank's development strategy, Minister Pulev explained that the management will strive to expand the product range offered by BBR.
He said that the bank currently does not support small and medium-sized enterprises. For this purpose, a new investment instrument has been developed between MIR, BBR and the Bulgarian Stock Exchange and private investors, in order to raise financing for small and medium-sized enterprises through the Stock Exchange. He added that the ministry has reduced the salaries of Supervisory Board members from BGN 10,000 to BGN 2,000 per person and that two new members of the Supervisory Board were appointed yesterday. "With their expertise, they should help the authority to eliminate all systemic problems in the bank," he further argued.
With regard to the Recovery and Resilience Plan, he stated that there is no danger of slowing down, on the contrary, there is an acceleration. "We have proven that we are a government of action. In MIR, in August, we found an open procedure on PVA with "minimum interest". At the moment, we have closed it with over 2,500 submitted project proposals for it," Pulev said. At the moment, the second procedure for "ICT solutions and cyber security" has been opened by the PSU for BGN 30.6 million. Nearly 3,000 projects have already applied for it. The deadline for applications is December 19, the minister also pointed out and announced that the companies that will be financed under the PVU under both procedures will be announced at the beginning of February. By the end of the year, MIR will announce 2 more procedures under PVA. One is for RES and batteries for local energy storage by small and medium-sized enterprises for a total of BGN 200 million, and the other for development activities and intellectual property for BGN 120 million.
"We traveled almost the entire country, met with more than 20 regional governors and the local associations of businesses by region to talk about the application under the PVU," added the minister. He announced that the MIR is about to manage financial instruments for about BGN 350 million under the PPE and the structural funds of the EU. "A large part of them are managed through the Fund of Funds, and it is precisely to ensure clean and transparent management that we are adding the Supervisory Board of the FnF", he answered a question about why the structure of the Fund is changing from a single-level (with a Management Board) to a two-level (with a Management and Supervisory Board).
Minister Pulev explained that he has no concerns about the second payment under the PVU. According to him, the legal requirements have been met. MIR has fulfilled all the requirements for it, related to the drafting of bills and their submission to the National Assembly. He specified that the Law on Personal Bankruptcy has been transferred to the Ministry of Justice. Regarding the Startup visa, Pulev pointed out that the ministry has developed it, and the Council of Ministers has adopted it.
In his words, MIR has enough resources set aside to take on its commitments related to the NATO Innovation Fund and the presentation of Bulgaria, in order to prepare a professional participation in EXPO 2025 in Osaka.