Bulgaria committed to disbanding state energy conglomerate - minister

Bulgaria committed to disbanding state energy conglomerate - minister

Bulgarian Economy Minister Traycho Traykov said on June 28 that the Cabinet was committed to dismantling Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH), the state-owned umbrella holding set up to manage state-owned assets in the energy sector. "The holding will cease to exist. It is clear that there is a synergy between some of the companies in the holding, which should be used both administratively and operationally," Traykov told Bulgarian National Radio."Until now, despite the existence of the holding structure, this synergy has not been used because each company was left on its own, as they were prior to the establishment of the holding. There was only an umbrella structure that collected management fees and that has to stop.""Instead, we will set up several companies that will have true operational compatibility," Traykov said.BEH subsidiaries are the nuclear power plant at Kozloduy, gas company Bulgargaz, Sofia heating utility Toplofikatsiya, Maritsa Iztok 2 thermal power plant and the Mini Maritsa Iztok mines, as well as power transmission company NEK, the sole owner of the planned nuclear power plant at Belene and the parent company of ESO, which operates Bulgaria's power grid. Through Bulgargaz, BEH also owns 50 per cent in the South Stream gas pipeline stretch that will cross Bulgaria.The Cabinet also planned to set up an energy exchange, where electricity producers, distributors and traders would be able to sign contracts, which would be the most transparent way to avoid debate pertaining to the price of electricity. The bourse would be operational by end-2011, he said.

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