The list of public procurement tender cancellations in Bulgaria this week grew on February 18, when the country’s two port cities on the Black Sea, Varna and Bourgas, called off three projects worth 155.5 million leva, or about 79.5 million euro.
The largest of the three was a tender for street repairs in Varna, worth 120 million leva, with the municipality also cancelling a 24.5 million leva competition to pick a builder for the wastewater treatment plant in the nearby resort of Zlatni Pyassutsi (Golden Sands).
Bourgas municipality cancelled a tender to build a new sports hall, which was estimated at 11 million leva.
The local administrations called off the tenders at the request of Prime Minister Boiko Borissov, Bulgarian National Radio reported. Although there was no official statement on the latest cancellations from the government, Borissov said during the Cabinet meeting on February 17 that the government was committed to cancelling all tenders that carried even a “whiff of suspicion”, according to a partial transcript made available by the government’s media office.
Separately, Sofia city hall was planning to cancel a 35 million leva contract to repair the Winter Palace sports venue, Bulgarian National Television said, quoting a Borissov statement to reporters while in Brussels, where he is attending the two-day EU summit.
If that tender is cancelled, that would be the second time in less than two years that public procurement for the venue has been called off.
Previous tenders cancelled this week include contracts to build a motorway stretch, forest roads in south-western Bulgaria, as well as a tender to pick a new contractor to print Bulgarian identification documents. The latest cancellations bring the total worth of the contracts to about 1.5 billion leva.
(Varna city hall. Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)