At a press conference held today, January 24, 2020, the Association of Bulgarian Employers' Organizations (AOBE) presented its priorities for 2020.
The heads of the four nationally represented employers' organizations, members of AOBR participated in the press conference: Vasil Velev - Chairman of the Association of Industrial Capital in Bulgaria, Radosvet Radev - Chairman of the Bulgarian Indu, Tsvetan Simeonov - Chairman of the Bulgarian Commerce and Industry Committee - Chairman of the Confederation of Employers and Industrialists in Bulgaria.
Kiril Domuschiev, AOBE's rotating chairman for 2020, opened the press conference. "As employers, as AOBE, the union of employers' organizations, we have a lot to boast about. Although some speak of an approaching crisis, we, our economy, are working steadily and going up. The forecast for the growth of the Bulgarian economy in 2019 was 3.1, but now it is 3.6 at the end of the year. This growth is largely due to all of you in this Chamber, because you are the real engine of the economy in Bulgaria. In 2020, we expect a new increase in GDP (BGN 126-127 billion), which is actually the growth of the economy. We have also made record high exports in the first 7-8 months of this year - nearly 17 billion Euros of exports, which shows that we are working qualitatively and competitively. I take this opportunity to thank the real business, the members of our organizations, for all their efforts, for the development of the economy and for the prosperity of the Bulgarian society," Kiril Domuschiev said.
BCCI President Tsvetan Simeonov, Rotary Chairman of AOBE for 2019, presented a report on the results of the Association's work: “It is nice when you can report serious achievements. They were possible thanks to the exceptional activity of our employers' organizations over the past year. Alone the positions we presented to the competent state authorities and institutions were 63! "
"I just want to wish the new AOBR President Kiril Domuschiev and KRIB a successful term, "Tsvetan Simeonov said. "All of us, including BCCI, will help and make suggestions so that we can report back successes at the end of the next year.
We always want our statements to be widely covered and on this occasion I would like to thank all thе media who have correctly, accurately and timely brought the information to all for which it was intended during the BCCI Presidency, "said the BCCI President. Tsvetan Simeonov.
BIA Chairman Radosvet Radev stressed that the aspiration of employers is for Bulgaria not to stay out of the fourth industrial revolution. "Soon, all businesses that do not have this value in their management - digitalization, will find themselves outside the markets, outside the competitive environment. We hereby insist that the the executive powers be consolidated and that the functional responsibilities of the individual administrations be clearly distinguished. We insist on close cooperation with business and development of public-private partnerships in the field of technological infrastructure, introduction of innovation voucher systems especially for SMEs, etc. It is very important to adapt the educational system to the new conditions, "said Radosvet Radev.
"Our other focus is the active insistence on reducing the regulatory burden - repeated and frequent changes in the legal framework, adoption of regulatory mechanisms related to European requirements," said the BIA chairman. "Among our priorities are changes in labor law that are infinitely outdated and public relations that are so altered," said the BIA chairman. "That is why we are pushing for a whole new Labor Code. We are very interested in regulating overtime as fully legal. This and the trade unions accept it because even now many workers work for more than one employer, which is actually illegal because it is overtime and it is prohibited under the Code. "
"We are pushing for an end to the provisionally introduced payment regime for the first three days of hospital care, and we are firmly in favor of changing the TELC system. By 2020, we expect the GDP to be around 130 billion leva, 260 working days a year, our members will produce half a billion levs of GDP. This is due to the esteemed Bulgarian entrepreneur and if we ever seem to be whining about the hospital problem, consider it. Fake ones are a non-realized GDP, "the BIA chairman concluded.
KRIB Chairman Kiril Domuschiev detailed some of AOBR's 2020 priorities, such as the fight against the gray economy, corruption, monopolization and cartelization. "According to the IMF, as of December 2019, the share of the gray economy in Bulgaria is 37.8%, which indicates an unfavorable tendency.
As representatives of the responsible Bulgarian business, we are uniting the efforts of all stakeholders to show our intolerant attitude towards the informal economy, to highlight good business practices and to outline the main problems and ways to overcome them, ”said Kiril Domuschiev.
Formation of Bulgaria's national position on the problems, policies and measures of the European Green Deal by 2050 and the implementation of the National Energy and Climate Plan are among the priorities of the AOBE for 2020. An update, but also a threat, as the start with the old member states is not equal. They are much more developed and their transition will be much easier than ours, "said the President of CRIB.
"An important priority is also to facilitate the import of foreign workers and specialists, incl. through the issuance of a card for access to the Bulgarian labor market - Bulgarian card ", said Kiril Domuschiev. "We see the tendency not only for more Bulgarians to return to our country to work, but for foreigners to come. And Deputy Prime Minister Mrs. Nikolova promised us that they are already working on easing the procedures related to obtaining Bulgarian citizenship, as well as easing the regime for entry of third-country workers. For our part, we have also made a commitment - the average wage in the business sector will continue to rise in the coming year. "
AICB Chairman Vasil Velev said that “energy is one of the two most serious problems for the Bulgarian industry and Bulgarian business. We pay the most expensive price for electricity in the EU, without including the "Obligation to the Public" supplement, which for the most part is the "Obligation to the so-called" Obligation to the so-called. US headquarters. " And this, given that we have huge standby capacity that accumulates losses and could work, improving our financial performance, to sell (including for export) electricity at a price of BGN 100 per megawatt hour instead of staying, and we should import electricity at the price of 110 leva. A mismanagement of supplying our narrow market leads to an absolutely abnormal situation facing the Bulgarian industry. This immediately translates into competitiveness and the ability to increase people's pay, "said the AICB chairman.
"The second problem is related to the lack of human resources. In the next 20 years, Bulgaria will lose about 50,000 people a year on the labor market. Our country must start taking adequate measures very quickly. For us, the main priority for recruiting human resources is the Bulgarian diasporas abroad, but these alone will not be enough. We need to start using good European models like Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic. The Employment Agency should no longer be an agency that exports Bulgarian workers abroad, but an agency that imports foreigners to Bulgaria at the request of Bulgarian companies, "said AICB Chairman Vasil Velev.