Bulgaria to pay 9.5M leva state aid to tour operators for charter flights

Bulgaria’s Tourism Ministry is to pay more than 9.5 million leva (about 4.85 million euro) to tour operators under the scheme to provide state aid for charter flights at a rate of 35 euro a seat, the ministry said.

The purpose of the grant is to help Bulgaria’s tourism industry recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the statement said.

The ministry said that it had received 139 applications for state aid under the scheme, adding up to more than 19.3 million leva.

Two of the applications had been withdrawn before being considered, 64 applications submitted by 32 tour operators had been approved and 73 had been rejected.

The ministry said that the applications had been reviewed by a committee including external experts who assessed the applications for compliance with the requirements of the state aid scheme as approved by the European Commission.

It said that the funds allocated were based on a verified figure of 139 825 foreign tourists who used charter flights between June 1 2021 and May 14 2022.

In terms of the scheme, the state aid is granted on the basis of each passenger using a tourist service where the final destination is Bulgaria, and only flights with a capacity of not less than 100 seats are eligible.

(Photo: Rui Caldeira/sxc.hu)

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