Bulgarian City Hall to Give “Empty Check” to Well-Connected Businessman

Municipal councilors in the city of Haskovo are to vote Wednesday on a report submitted by the Chair of the Municipal Council, Tanya Zaharieva. Its content is reduced to these words: “You give them as much as they want”.  Therefore, the Haskovo taxpayers would not have the privilege to know how much they will pay as the proposal simply has no specified amounts.

It is in connection with a project under the EU Operational Program Regional Development “Improving Educational Infrastructure by Reconstruction (Repair, Renovation and Implementation of Energy Efficiency Measures) in Schools and Kindergartens in Haskovo”. The estimated value is BGN 20 million and six schools and kindergartens have to be repaired and rehabilitated with this money.

For each of the six facilities, the winning bidders have been selected according to the criterion of the lowest price. The municipality is bragging for having saved BGN 2.8 million. These bidders are “Indjovstroy” (BGN 2.999 million), ET “Metalic – Ivan Mihaylov” (BGN 3.093 million), “Aqua – 3” (BGN 1.978 million), DZZD “Ata-Gert” (BGN 1.677 million), “EE Engineering” (BGN 1.929 million) and DZZD “Innovation HH” (BGN 1.755 million).

Instead of taking responsibility for unplanned construction works that have not been budgeted in the contracts, the companies are asking more money from the municipality. In a report submitted by Mayor Belivanov for the August 4 meeting of the Municipal Council, there are indicated amounts for three sites: BGN 157,188 for “Indjovstroy”, BGN 271,112 for ET “Metallic – Ivan Mihaylov” and BGN 12,481 for “Aqua – 3”.


This report has been withdrawn, the site Haskovo.info reported on August 4.

However, a new report has been submitted, this time by Tanya Mihaylova, Chair of the Municipal Council. It has to be voted on Wednesday, and sums and items are not listed at all. Both reports foresee the money to come from the municipality’s 2018 budget, which needs to be updated for that purpose.


The most prominent among the companies requesting additional funds is ET “Metallic – Ivan Mihaylov”. Big businessman Ivan Mihaylov from the second-largest city of Plovdiv has won with this company public contracts for millions, such as the construction of the wall along Bulgaria’s southern border. He has a close business relationship with Todor Boyadziev, who is the best man of former Interior Minister and lawmaker from the ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) party, Tsvetan Tsvetanov. Boyadzhiev’s name came to fame in connection with the “Dunes Gate” scandal. Their companies are part of several consortia to implement infrastructure projects, according to the Daxy information system.

According to a report by the site Offnews, during the term in office of Tsvetanov as Interior Minister, this consortium was one of the main donors of the Ministry of Interior.

The vote on the innovative “as much as they want” report on additional funds will hardly face any opposition, as the Haskovo City Hall is completely seized by GERB. The rehabilitation contracts have been signed by Deputy Mayor Konsulov, who is very close to GERB lawmaker and former GERB Economy and Energy Minister, Delyan Dobrev. Konsulov’s mother is a municipal councilor from GERB. The Chief Architect of Haskovo is the daughter of the leader of the GERB municipal councilors group, and so on.

Bivol revealed earlier that one of the companies in the top three of rehabilitation works for the whole of Bulgaria is “Eco Tradex Group” of Delyan Dobrev’s brother-in-law. Meanwhile, the company of Dobrev’s parents carries out construction supervision of rehabilitation projects. Eco Tradex Group, however, is not among the companies that have won contracts for school and kindergarten rehabilitation.



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