Controversial Bulgarian MP formally declares new assets

Written by on September 4, 2015 in Bulgaria - Comments Off on Controversial Bulgarian MP formally declares new assets

Delyan Peevski has formally submitted a new asset disclosure form to Bulgarian Parliament, listing a number of stakes in local and foreign companies, most notably in Bulgaria’s largest newspaper publishing group.

The changes were made public in August, when ownership changes in the companies were recorded in the Trade Register. According to reports in Bulgarian media, Peevski met the legal deadline for declaring the new assets, but Parliament did not make his asset disclosure available online until after the National Assembly reconvened earlier this week.

Peevski, who is an MP for the opposition Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF), had been linked to ownership in a number of companies over the years, with reports claiming he effectively controlled the media conglomerate nominally owned by his mother (this was based on the accounts of former employees in those newspapers and his occasional use of “my media” in interviews), as well as the former state tobacco monopoly Bulgartabac.

The official records now say he owns 50 per cent in the Balkan Media Company, which publishes the Telegraf and Monitor dailies and has launched an acquisition bid for Kanal 3 television station, and 90 per cent in NCN Investments, a company that through its subsidiaries holds five per cent in Bulgartabac. He also owns half of Bio Water and Bio Water Investment companies, as well as 49 per cent in Al Entisar General Enterprises Co L.L.C.

The actual asset declaration only lists his stakes – in handwriting and not very legible on the facsimile provided by Parliament – and gives no further details that would help identify the companies.

Peevski has been the subject of several controversies over the years, but the biggest one was his appointment as director of the State Agency for National Security in June 2013 by the ruling coalition comprised of the socialists and MRF, which spurred large protests throughout Bulgaria and undermined the cabinet of Plamen Oresharski from the start, leading to his departure from office only 14 months later.

(Screengrab of Peevski’s asset disclosure form from Parliament website. To see the full form, in Bulgarian, click here.)

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