Bulgaria’s President Roumen Radev said on October 17 that he has vetoed provisions in the amendments to the State Property Act, passed by Parliament last week, arguing that the changes would open the door for “stealth privatisation” of state-owned companies.
Bulgaria has a list of state enterprises, deemed to have “strategic importance for the economy or high social importance”, which can be put into private hands only if Parliament votes to exclude them from that list.
Provisions in the recently-passed amendments remove the interdiction on using assets held by these companies as contributions in kind to other state or municipality owned enterprises, Radev said in his veto motives.
These provisions contradicted the purpose of the list, since the company that the assets were transferred to could be privatised with those assets, in some cases without needing explicit Government approval.
“This creates a real risk for stealth privatisation of companies that should be subject to privatisation only upon approval by the National Assembly,” Radev said.
Radev’s veto is the sixth so far this year, with Parliament overturning four such decisions and agreeing to strike down the vetoed provisions in one case.
(Bulgarian President Roumen Radev photo: eu2018bg.bg)