Bulgaria State Employees to Choose New Attire or Vacation

2009-04-02

The Bulgarian State will not slate any additional budget funds for state employees' vacations. The declaration was made Thursday by Bulgaria's Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Ivaylo Kalfin, who spoke upon conclusion of the Cabinet's discussion of measures to help the tourist sector. Kalfin addressed the issue of vouchers for state employees, saying that each institution could decide how to use their social funds. The funds are usually distributed to employees in the form of vouchers for business attire, cafeteria food and, more rarely, for vacations. Kalfin spoke in response to an earlier statement, made by the Chair of the State Tourism Agency, Anelya Krushkova, who said she was in favor of the idea to let the State employees decide if they wish to use their vouchers to "buy a suit or go on vacation at the Bulgarian beach resorts." The State Administration Minister, Nikolay Vasilev, also voiced support for the idea, saying employees should, when price was comparable, purchase Bulgarian made clothes and shoes, or if they did not need them, visit the Bulgarian resorts, since all of the above would support the Bulgairna economy. Foreign Minister Kalfin stated, however, that visas for Russian tourist would continue to cost EUR 35 because Bulgaria could not violate international agreements. The National Tourism Strategy, adopted by the Cabinet, forecasts EUR 8 B in profits by 2013 and includes measures for the effective use of Bulgaria's natural and historical resources. SPA and Golf tourism will become priorities for the sector.