Minister Lichev on BNR: An order banning the import of waste from non-EU countries is being drafted

25 May, 2021 | 17:17

The caretaker Minister came to a bankrupt MOEW and absence of fight against corruption


I came to find a bankrupt Ministry and a long-term failure to fulfill basic obligations. As an outsider, as a citizen, I thought this smelled of corruption, and I went inside to look for the evidence. I called the Chief of the Inspectorate and asked her to assess the corruption risk of individual units. She told me this was part of her official duties, but there was no methodology for such an assessment... I realized that the fight against corruption, even at mid-levels of the Ministry was never regarded as a serious issue. To the contrary, such a fight at these levels was to be prevented.” This was said on Bulgaria National Radio (BNR) by the caretaker Minister of Environment and Water Asen Lichev.

He announced that the annual budget of the Ministry of Environment and Water is 64 million BGN, but currently 10 million BGN are lacking.

“The budget of the Enterprise for Management of Environmental Protection Activities (EMEPA), which is the main instrument for financing environmental and water protection policies, is 74 million BGN. But it lacks 24 million BGN. For me, this is a deficit, there is no money”.

Lichev shared what he found when starting his term in office at the Ministry – an incomplete national waste management plan for the period 2021 - 2027, an incomplete national priority framework for action for the period 2021 - 2027, an incomplete project for the real-time management of the waters of the Iskar river.

On the show “Something more” Asen Lichev added:

I have commissioned orders for protected areas to be issued as soon as possible. This will make it possible to establish violations of environmental legislation in issuing construction permits to the mafia.”

The Minister assured that within the term in office of the caretaker cabinet he will solve the issue with the import of various types of waste, including those for incineration:

An order is being drafted to ban the import of waste from Turkey and non-EU countries. An order is being drafted to ban the transit of waste through Bulgaria, except from Romania and Greece. And another order is to ban the transportation of waste across our territorial Black sea waters... I am ready for an attack on all fronts”.


The interview with Asen Lichev is available in the following sound file -

Source: BNR