PM: Bulgaria losing tens of millions of leva daily because of coronavirus

Bulgaria is losing tens of millions of leva every day because of Covid-19 new coronavirus as consumption drops, and with fuel consumption down 15 per cent, Prime Minister Boiko Borissov said at a Cabinet meeting on March 10.

At a morning briefing on March 10 by the national crisis staff against coronavirus, it was announced that the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in Bulgaria remained four. Eight tests that had proved inconclusive were being redone. These eight samples are from Pleven and Gabrovo.

Two Bulgarian institutions are developing projects for protective masks. One is also involved in the production of active substances that help protect against viruses.

Bulgarian scientists have looked at several types of masks and found that activated charcoal made from apricot kernels can be used to absorb bacteria.

The development of the project is being funded with 24 million leva (about 12 million euro) from the state and European Union programmes.

Minister of Education Krassimir Valchev said that kindergartens, schools and higher education institutions will be given disinfectants. A meeting with manufacturers of disinfectants will be held on March 10.

Earlier on Tuesday, Valchev said that the national “flu vacation” that has closed schools countrywide would not be extended beyond March 11 inclusive. However, schools in the districts of Gabrovo and Pleven – site of coronavirus cases – would remain closed, as they will in Plovdiv, where the district administration has extended the “flu vacation” and schools will re-open on March 16.

An extension of the “flu vacation” in the city of Sofia was possible, Valchev said. A decision is pending.

Borissov said that an attempt at the illegal export of 7500 protective masks from Bulgaria had been thwarted. At a special sitting on March 8, a ban on the export of masks and other protective equipment was among measures agreed to by the Cabinet against the spread of coronavirus.

Borissov will take part in a special meeting of the European Council, to be held online on the evening of March 10. Heads of governments of EU countries, as well as members of the European Parliament and the European Commission, will participate in the meeting.

The meeting would discuss both coronavirus and the migration situation, Borissov said.

“We will ask the European Commission for 130 million euro to equip police in the event of a severe migration wave, if there is one,” he said. Bulgaria would look at the option of directly ordering equipment from Germany, he said.

(Photo of Borissov:



The Sofia Globe staff

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