Bulgaria plans state-owned oil company

Bulgaria's government has announced plans to set up a state-owned company to manage its oil and fuel reserves and build a network of filling stations in a bid to strengthen competition and bring petrol prices down. The country's press is dismayed.

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Kapital (BG) /

Competition already inexistent

The government is hindering the free market economy, Kapital complains:

“The most absurd thing about all of this is the main argument with which the idea was put forward in public. Two key ministers - the finance minister and the economy minister - explained that the goal of the project was to lower the price of petrol, which was currently too high in Bulgaria in view of the international economic situation. ... In other words: both key economic ministries admit that the oil market in Bulgaria is dysfunctional, and that there is no effective competition in it.”

Club Z (BG) /

Investment in outdated infrastructure

This project is not future-oriented, Club Z complains:

“In France, the state has guaranteed Renault a loan of five billion euros for the development and construction of electric car batteries. The government has also committed itself to building 100,000 charging stations for electric cars throughout the country. Emmanuel Macron's reconstruction plan for the automotive industry is worth a total of eight billion euros. ... Bulgaria's plan, on the other hand, is to build a chain of state-run petrol stations. While others are building the infrastructure of the future, we are busy expanding the infrastructure of the past.”