Ovcharov presents business and investment opportunities in Bulgaria at forum in New York

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New York, March 10 (BTA) - Bulgarian Economy and Energy Minister Roumen Ovcharov acquainted participants in a "Bulgaria in a New Era" Business Forum with Bulgaria's economic indicators, investment climate and the trends in its balance of payments.

The forum was held on Friday night in New York and was attended by more than 150 representatives of the US financial and business circles.

Ovcharov spoke of the growing competitive power of the Bulgarian market, the country's credit rating and its role as exporter of energy in the region. He dwelled in particular on strategic energy projects in which Bulgaria is taking part, including AMBO, NABUCO and Bourgas-Alexandroupolis and the favourable tax policy for foreign investors in the country.

At a working lunch with representatives of the economic and financial circles in New York, Maria-Francesca Spatolisano, Head of the Economic Affairs section at the Delegation of the European Commission to the United Nations, made an assessment of Bulgaria's future development as member of the EU.

"The New York Stock Exchange showed interest in the privatization of the Bulgarian Stock Exchange," Ovcharov said, emerging from a meeting with NYSE President Catherine Kinney.

Earlier in the day Ovcharov gave an interview for Bloomberg TV in which he said that Bulgaria's energy independence passes through its connection to a greater number of oil pipelines providing more energy sources.

Bulgarian Energy Minister Roumen Ovcharov urged fellow members of the European Union to join his country in turning to nuclear power to reduce the region's dependence on oil, the Budapest Business Journal e-zine writes.

"There is no other solution than nuclear power," the e-zine quotes Ovcharov as saying in the interview. "Bulgaria has already 30 years of good experience in running a nuclear power plant. It is safe. It provides very cheap energy," Ovcharov said as quoted by the e-zine.

"Bulgaria is seeking to reopen two units at its Kozloduy nuclear power plant that were shut down in December to meet EU safety demands before joining the bloc on January 1 along with Romania.

Bulgaria used to be the fourth-biggest power exporter in Europe after France, Czech Republic and Poland before the plant was closed. Bulgaria used to cover most of the power deficit in the region including Greece, Macedonia, Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro. Now these countries are suffering shortages of electricity, the Hungarian e-zine quotes Ovcharov as saying in his interview for Bloomberg TV.

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