On Friday (31 January) the parliament ordered the government to take action to protect the production capacity of its coal plants, regardless of the European Commission’s position on the matter, meaning that despite huge losses Bulgaria will keep its coal industry indefinitely.
The decision was initiated by the socialist party BSP and backed by all parliamentary parties except for the Turkish minority party DPS.
“The government is behind the coal plants and behind the Bulgarian miners,” Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova said in parliament. The problem with the protection of the state-owned Thermal power plant “Maritza East 2” is that the company is bankrupt. The debt of the plant exceeds €760 million and last year’s losses amounted to €400 million. The state still expects the European Commission’s permission to save the plant by increasing its capital by at least €300 million. (Krassen Nikolov | EURACTIV.bg)