Minister Hristo Prodanov held informal meetings with the Bulgarian Hotel and Restaurant Association and the National Board of Tourism

08 January 2022

The meeting discussed the main problems of the industry related to the method of calculating aid, its effectiveness, the problems of the policy for seasonal workers, the lack of e-visas, the lack of staff in the sector, advertising, green certificate, uncertainty arising from policy of the Ministry of Health when issuing last-minute orders without a grace period, infrastructure and many other problems that affect not only the sector but also the economy of Bulgaria as a whole. “The tourism sector is the fastest and easiest conduit for financing our economy, which is why other ministries must help the Ministry of Tourism as much as possible,” the business representatives said.

According to the industry, the definition of “tourist” must be changed, as well as amendments in the Tourism Act must be made in order that the competitiveness of the Bulgarian product be increased and the measures become effective for everybody in the industry.

The Bulgarian Hotel and Restaurant Association suggested also that Bulgarian journalists rest, at their expense, in their facilities for periods of several days, so that they can safely prepare their materials to promote our local attractions.

Minister Prodanov said that he fully understands and supports the industry. He gave the example that while he was an MP, he asked several times for food vouchers to be used when buying tourist products, but so far, it has not been accepted. Despite the obstacles from previous governments, he will continue to work on his proposal, as well as in support of the tourism sector. Minister Prodanov pointed out that it is important for the tourism sector to be united so that it can have more authority to help. He fully understands the situation and supports the industry. The Minister proposed the establishment of a tourism committee, which would include representatives from all associations, so that the sector could really be helped.

“The procedure for the implementation of the first measure of 30 million euros, which supported tourism, has already been completed, and the last payment order was issued today,” the minister said. The second measure for EUR 30 million is underway, for which a decree of the Council of Ministers has already been adopted and notification to the EC is expected. The Minister assured the business that an organization for work has been established in the Ministry and after receiving the approval from the EC, the procedure will be followed as soon as possible.

Minister Prodanov also said that the work in the ministry will be optimized, the non-functioning practices will be changed and the capacity will be increased, because the prosperity of the sector is its priority. From the daily meetings with the industry he expects to get first-hand information on which measures will be most appropriate so that the sector can start working calmly and see a reliable partner in the face of the Ministry of Tourism.

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