Bulgarian government votes 38M leva to keep fuel subsidy for motorists to year-end

Bulgaria’s caretaker government has allocated 38 million leva (about 19.4 million euro) to keep the fuel subsidy of 25 stotinki a litre for individually-owned private vehicles going up to the end of 2022.

The fuel subsidy was put in place with effect from early July by the former Kiril Petkov government as an anti-crisis measure in the face of then-soaring prices at the pump.

The former government allocated 150 million leva for the measure.

According to Bulgaria’s Finance Ministry, by November 10 about 130 million leva of this sum had been used.

On the basis of estimates that the system absorbed the funds at a rate of about a million leva day, it was estimated that the money would run out on about December 5.

The caretaker government has said that it will come up with a new scheme for subsidies for fuel subsidies for motorists, but only for those with low incomes. It has not yet announced what the criteria would be for eligibility for the subsidy.

The existing scheme has been a subject of inquiries to Bulgaria from the European Commission, because of concern that it violates EU single market rules by allowing only Bulgarian-registered vehicles to be eligible.

(Photo: Ramzi Hashisho/freeimages.com)

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