Delays Costing Bulgarian Fisheries BGN 22 Million23 August 2013
BULGARIA - Delays in the operational programme of Fisheries and Aquaculture could lose the Bulgaria around BGN 22 million.
So far, about 87 per cent of the money has been agreed, but only 32 per cent of it was actually paid, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Food Valentina Marinova stated on Bulgarian National Television, reports Standart.
One of the main reasons for the lack of payments is that there are problems with the implementation of the regulations under the various laws relating to the absorption of EU funds.
Some regulations set impossible conditions, which make an application project impossible. Therefore the Ministry of Agriculture is in negotiations with the European Commission to extend the implementation of the projects for the small fishing groups for at least another five months or until May 2014, Deputy Minister Marinova informed.
She admitted that small farmers and fishermen do not have good chances when they are submitting documents for funding. Furthermore, they do not qualify for bank loans because they lack the necessary credit history and banks do not view them as reliable customers, she added.
The deputy minister promised a change in the ordinance granting financial aid under the "Development of fisheries areas" measure, which causes the problems for the potential users of the funds.
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