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borissov

  Electricity price hiccups over the last two months seemed timely to attest the required price assumptions for the financial model of the Belene NPP. These days, prices have returned to normal levels, but the idea of higher electricity prices, at par with revenue projections, gained some ground – ostensibly the free market at work.   There is a lot in common between the procedural patterns behind the Belene NPP and the Balkan Gas Hub. Most of the activities only nominally happen in the open – formal tender procedure, the rite observed, the end – terms agreed in advance. There is no true competition, no market interplay, no real public scrutiny, just political expediency.   Summarizing the main features of the applied policy line in pursuit of a lighter version

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tok 1

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belene1

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ilian vassilev

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belene ploshtadka

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belene1

  The geopolitical and geo-economic context of the Belene project has changed in many respects, but at the same time, it has retained some permanent and stable features. Some of them stem from the link between the civilian and military nuclear programs of leading countries and from the aspirations of global military-political alliances to “keep an eye on” the development of nuclear energy, not only in respective member states, but also around the world under the nuclear non-proliferation regime. As in the past, the nuclear programs in the military and civilian fields operate in tandem, intertwined at R & D, manufacturing and operational levels.   In fact, civil nuclear power is a by-product of military nuclear programs – which are both natural spin-offs of the nuclear arms race, but also

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putin-gotce1

  The System Spill over   By proximity, Bulgaria mirrors Russian autocratic tendencies, including mimicking the state oligarchy model. Unlike Russia, however, the Bulgarian version can’t be sustained on “natural” resources – oil, gas, nuclear fuel-based wealth. Redistribution can be effectuated on added value and GDP growth, or thereafter on the budget accumulated taxed economic output. Bulgaria’s autocracy has limited margins for self-propelled growth and wealth sharing, which implies greater reliance on grand corruption mechanisms.   The Kremlin’s GDP sustains its dynamics even on holidays as the oil and gas industry turns round the clock. Bulgarian GDP, however, must be generated and incomes earned.   In Russia, the population exhibits extreme patience, willing to accept sacrifice in the name of “stability” (note the overlay in the jargon of the ruling

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Yuriy_Chaika_

    At the beginning of the week, the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation was given an institutional protocol welcome moresuitable to a senior political figure than to the head of prosecution of a country. Meetings were held with the Vice-President, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Justice, even the Patriarch. This institutional focus does not correspond to the visitor’s official rank, but reveals the true political goals of the visit. Prosecutor General Chaika is one of the key actors in the Kremlin’s authoritarian and oligarchic regime, and above all, he directly executes political orders in favor of the regime. As the official Kremlin envoy, Chaika apparently had, above all, a political mission disguised as co-operation with the Prosecution of the Republic of Bulgaria (PRB). We can only guess

This entry was posted in Bulgaria and tagged , , , , , by Atanas Slavov.

About Atanas Slavov

Atanas Slavov is a jurist - a constitutionalist, professor of public law at the Department of Public Administration at Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski. Since 2016 he is a Doctor of Law at the University of Glasgow (Orthodox Political Theology and Democratic Consolidation) and a Doctor of Constitutional Law at the Sofia University (2009). Atanas Slavov has specialized in various American and European academic institutions. His research interests and publications focus on constitutional law and theory, direct democracy and civic participation, political theology, law and religion. He has worked as Counselor on Constitutional Matters to the Minister of Justice (2014-2015), Counselor on Legislative Matters to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior (2016), Constitutional Expert at the Legislative Council of the Ministry of Justice (2012-2014) and legal adviser in the non-governmental sector. Atanas Slavov is the author of the monographs “Civil Participation in Constitutional Democracy” (2017) and “Supremacy of the Constitution. Nature and Guarantees”(2010). He is a member of the Managing Board of the Atlantic Council of Bulgaria, member of the Managing Board and the Board of Trustees of the Institute for Direct Democracy, member of the Bulgarian Association of Political Science and other non-governmental organizations.
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belene

  Few people envy these days the Bulgarian minister of energy who is tasked with a mission impossible – to identify and offer the Bulgarian government a Houdiniesque escape from the Belene conundrum. The equipment is due on the Belene site later in autumn. Despite allegations in the court of arbitration by the Russian side that the reactor and the equipment are already produced, it was not until NEK paid ASE Euro 610 million on December 9, 2016, that the Russian manufacturer engaged in substance.   For Mrs. Petkova, the Bulgarian energy minister, there does not seem to be an easy way out of the deadlock – there is no decision in sight that would not imply new sunken costs.   The year has seen delegations by “interested” parties visiting