The Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria (CITUB) and the Podkrepa Confederation of Labour said in a presentation addressed to Labour and Social Policy Minister Totyu Mladenov and copied to the media that they are seriously concerned over the stalled implementation of the Government's anti-crisis plan and propose that the measures be updated.
A breakthrough in the absorption of EU funding has yet to be achieved, and the implementation of a number of government-planned infrastructure projects is delayed, the unions argue.
The anti-crisis policies and steps need constant monitoring and impact assessment, and the administrative and procedural obstacles to the absorption of resources from the EU funds must be overcome, according to the two confederations. They argue that an updating of the measures will help increase actual payments from the EU funds, decrease inter-company debts, encourage private enterprise and responsibility, and guarantee social security.
CITUB and Podkrepa insist on the transformation of the competent working group with the National Council for Tripartite Cooperation into an Anti-Crisis Council under the Prime Minister, with the participation of institutions and persons invited by the PM. The Anti-Crisis Council is supposed to monitor the socio-economic situation and propose new measures or improvement of existing measures. The social cooperation councils at the line ministries must operate more effectively, and financial resources must be provided to the National Statistical Institute for more expeditious detection of the crisis impacts, the unions insist.
They also demand a halt to the amassing of outstanding debts of the Exchequer to the real sector, an establishment of a public register of the debts of the Exchequer, and inclusion in public procurement contracts of clauses on payment within 15 days after acceptance of the supply or service.
The unions propose that loan financing be catalyzed through an increase of the capital of the Bulgarian Development Bank by at least 500 million leva, and that a single institutional framework be established for management of state property.