Friday, 31 July 2009

Sombre Economic News

Bulgaria's new finance minister predicts economic contraction


SOFIA, Bulgaria -- The new cabinet met for the first time on Wednesday (July 29th), with Finance Minister Simeon Dyankov serving up some sobering news: he predicts the economy will shrink by 6.3% this year. He quoted the latest forecast from the Agency for Economic Analyses, as well as forecasts by his ministry. Experts say it will likely be the working forecast that the ministry will use from now on, in contrast to the 2.5% contraction expected by his predecessor, Plamen Oresharski. Dyankov added that his ministry would have to raise an additional 1.3 billion euros this year, half through spending cuts, half from tax collection. 

Uncle's Comment: 6.3% is a VERY severe downturn, it's worse than the UK figures which are considered bad.Raising taxes and cutting public expenditure are not the solutions to this.I am a firm believer in spending your way out of a recession.The UK government has been virtually printing money !.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

English language exclusive !

Here is the first picture of the Osenovo pot farm !.

What I do for a living

Readers may have wondered what it is that I do for a living out here.The post title is a link to my property website.I hope you find it informative.I work in the North Black Sea region.

A blow for the 'blow'

It's been reported in Trud newspaper that three British nationals, from the village of Osenovo, near Albena/Varna, have been arrested for growing cannabis commercially.Its 30 kilo's, so quite alot, and in Bulgaria that's a minimum 5 years in nick !.

EXCLUSIVE: Another piece of information is that Gary's Bar in Klimentovo appears to have burnt down in an electrical fire.

It's all happening here viewers !.

Remember you heard the Gary's Bar info here first !.I have just posted it on 'mybulgaria'.Come here for all your Bulgarian Breaking News !.

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Part 3

Common expressions

Здравей (zdravéi) — Hello
Здрасти (zdrásti) — Hi [22]
Добро утро (dobró útro) — Good morning
Добър ден (dóbər dén) — Good day
Добър вечер (dóbər vécher) — Good evening
Лека нощ (léka nósht) — Good night
Довиждане (dovízhdane) — Good-bye
Кой си ти? (kói si ti) [informal, masculine] — Who are you?
Коя си ти? (kоiá si ti) [informal, feminine] — Who are you?

Кой сте Вие? (kói ste víe) [formal, masculine] — Who are you?
Как се казваш? (kak se kazvash) - What is your name?
Коя сте Вие? (kоiá ste víe) [formal, feminine] — Who are you?
Кои сте вие? (kоí ste víe) [plural form] - Who are you?
Как си? (kák si) [informal] — How are you?
Как сте? (kák sté) [formal, and also plural form] - How are you?
Да (dá) - Yes
Не (né) - No
Може би (mózhe bí) - Maybe
Какво правиш? (kakvó právish) [informal] — What are you doing?
Какво правите? (kakvó právite) [formal, and also plural form] - What are you doing?
Добре съм (dobré səm) — I’m fine
Всичко [най-]хубаво (vsíchko [nai-]húbavo) — All the best
Поздрави (pózdravi) — Regards
Благодаря (blagodaryə́) [formal and informal] — Thank you
Моля (mólia) — Please
Моля (mólia) — You're welcome
Извинете! (izvinéte) [formal] — Excuse me!
Извинявай! (izviniávai) [informal] — Sorry!
Обичам те! (obícham te) - I love you!
Колко е часът? (kólko e chasə́t) — What’s the time?
Говорите ли…? (govórite li…) — Do you speak…?
…английски (anglíiski) — English
…български (bə́lgarski) — Bulgarian
…немски (némski) — German
…Полски (polski) — Polish
…руски (ruski) — Russian
…холандски (holándski) — Dutch
…гръцки (grə́tski) — Greek
…македонски (makedónski) - Macedonian
…италиански (italiánski) — Italian
…испански (ispánski) — Spanish
…френски (frénski) — French
…японски (iapónski) — Japanese
…китайски (kitáiski) — Chinese
…корейски (koréiski) — Korean
Ще се видим скоро (shté sé vídim skóro) - We'll see each other soon
Ще се видим утре (shté sé vídim útre) - We'll see each other tomorrow

Part 2

Bulgarian words translated

NounsLatin (Latina) Bulgarian (Български) Macedonian (Македонски) Serbian (Српски/Srpski) Russian (Русский) Polish (Polski) English Spanish (Español) Greek (Ελληνικά)
arbor дърво дрво дрво/drvo дерево drzewo tree árbol δέντρο
patata картоф компир кромпир/krompir картофель ziemniak potato patata πατάτα
feles котка мачка мачка/mačka кошка kot cat gato γάτα
canis куче, пес куче, пес пас/pas собака (пёс) pies dog perro σκύλος
domus къща, дом куќа, дом кућа/kuća дом dom house casa σπίτι
mensa маса маса сто/sto стол stół table (furniture) mesa τραπέζι
lac мляко млеко млеко/mleko молоко mleko milk leche γάλα
sessio стол стол столица/stolica стул krzesło chair silla καρέκλα

Verbs:Bulgarian (Български) Macedonian (Македонски) Serbian (Српски/Srpski) Russian (Русский) Polish (Polski) English Spanish (Español) Greek (Ελληνικά)
имам имам имам/imam имею mam I have tengo έχω
искам, желая сакам желим, хоћу/želim, hoću хочу chcę I want quiero θέλω
правя,върша правам, вршам вршим/vršim делаю robię I do hago κάνω
ходя одам ходам/hodam хожу chodzę I walk ando περπατώ
говоря зборувам, говорам говорим/govorim говорю mówię I talk hablo μιλώ
намирам наоѓам налазим/nalazim нахожу znajduję I find encuentro βρίσκω
ям јадам једем/jedem ем jem I eat como τρώγω
пия пијам пијем/pijem пью piję I drink bebo πίνω

Bulgarian Alphabet and Language

Dont say that this blog isn't educational.Here is the first of a series of posts to deal with language issues.We start with the Bulgarian alphabet:

Bulgarian Alphabet ISO 9 IPA Name of Letter English equivalent
А а A a /a/ a a like the u in "under"
Б б B b /b/ бъ b like in "bug"
В в V v /v/ въ v like in "vet"
Г г G g /ɡ/ гъ g like in "god"
Д д D d /d/ дъ d like in "dog"
Е е E e /ɛ/ е e like in "best"
Ж ж Ž ž /ʒ/ жъ s like in "treasure"
З з Z z /z/ зъ z like in "zoo"
И и I i /i/ и ee like in "see"
Й й J j /j/ и кратко y like in "yes"
К к K k /k/ къ 
c like in "cat"
Л л L l /l/, /ʎ/ лъ 
l like in "line" and "call"
М м M m /m/ мъ m like in "man"
Н н N n /n/ нъ n like in "normal"
О о O o /ɔ/ о o like in "not"
П п P p /p/ пъ p like in "pet"
Р р R r /r/ ръ r like in "restaurant"
С с S s /s/ съ s like in "sound"
Т т T t /t/ тъ t like in "top"
У у U u /u/ у w like in "wet"
Ф ф F f /f/ фъ f like in "food"
Х х H h /x/ хъ h like in "hat"
Ц ц C c /ts/ цъ ts like in "fits"
Ч ч Č č /tʃ/ чъ ch like in "chip"
Ш ш Š š /ʃ/ шъ sh like in "shot"
Щ щ Ŝ ŝ /ʃt/ щъ sht like in "shtick"
Ъ ъ ʺ /ə/ ер голям u like in "fur"
Ь ь ʹ /ʲ/ ер малък combined with <о> as ьо, for a pronunciation like yo in "yoyo" 

less often with e as ьe, prounced like ye in "yet"
Ю ю Û û /ju/ ю u like in "menu"
Я я Â â /ja/ я ya like in "yarn"

Sore head

I must confess to having a bit of a sore head this morning, created solely by the 4 bottles of Menada rose I consumed yesterday on Balchik Harbour.But I did thoroughly enjoy the day, and birthdays only come once a year.

Now for some site announcements.In the next month we will be continuing our coverage of all things Bulgarian, plus we will be featuring Uncle's legendary (?) tipster service, as we sally forth into the bright waters of August's Tote Ebor meeting at York, where Uncle regularly tried to break the world champagne drinking record (and regularly failed, with predictable consequences).

This is the highlight of the Northern racing calender, and for ex-pats out there it can be picked up on Dubai Racing, hopefully, on Nilesat.

As I think I have previously posted I am keen to take contributions to the site, rather than just comment, from anyone who has something to say that is germane to the site.This can be general opinion or news stories.


Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Special Event

Well readers, it's Uncle's birthday (don't ask).Its also just over five years since I decamped permanently to Bulgaria.I can honestly say I havent regretted a minute of it.My Bulgarian voyage has been full of thrills and spills, but I am glad that I have emerged pretty well from it.

I have learnt lots about running my own business, about marketing and the internet.But moreover I have learnt more about life in the past five years than I did in twenty beforehand.

All in all I am much the wiser for it.God bless Bulgaria for giving me that opportunity.


Sunday, 26 July 2009

Albena live !

Albena is the holiday resort 4km from me, and 30km North of Varna.Here is a direct link to the webcam so that you can check what it's like for your hols/visit etc.Alternatively click the post title.


For any queries about this site or specific information I can be e mailed on info@gobg.co.uk


Well they are still looking for Look Here after yesterdays King George and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot.The filly finished a disappointing 7th,and did not appear to have anything left in the engine from 2 furlongs to the  finish.But many congratulations to Sir Michael Stoute on getting the treble, and especially the victory of Conduit which looked absolute class.

Uncle's Verdict: I should have tipped Seb Sanders in the race before,when he had a 40-1 winner despite spreading a plate in the parade ring before the race. In the words of the great Dick Dastardly 'Drat and Double Drat !'

Hooray it's raining

I was awoken at 6am this morning by a big bang (no jokes there readers).I thought it was a re-enactment of War of the Worlds but no it was a massive thunderstorm with plenty of lightening.After the heat of the past few days it was a welcome relief.The storms here are so spectacular, it's one of the things I really love about Bulgaria.There is a smell of freshness and moisture in the air now after so much humidity. It's just a pity I forgot to put on my all-weather flip-flops this morning !.

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Dull Saturday afternoon

Well Readers, its hot in the office, just me and Dave Brubeck on the stereo for company.Maybe 100f/36c today.But hell who is complaining, its better than wet and windy in East London !


Yes, its back !

Yes readers, Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the betting shop, Uncle's famous tipster service has reared its ugly head (a bit like Jaws coming out of the water).

As promised we are focussing on today's Ascot feature race, the King George and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes.

This is a fascinating race, with the field dominated by Sir Michael Stoute and Aidan O'Brien with three runners each.All three of Stoutes horses:Ask,Conduit and Tartan Bearer are highly rated.

O'Briens Frozen Fire is his highest rated but has been beaten by all three of Stoutes runners, and can be ruled out.

Uncle is however plumping for Look Here, trained by RM Beckett and ridden by Seb Sanders.Both stable and jockey are in form and its a great price at 8-1 best odds.Its last two outings (third both times) belie the fact that it was only beaten by a short head and a length, and the short head was to Ask.

Uncle is quietly confident !.

Economic News

The monthly amount needed for the livelihood of one person in a four-member family in Bulgaria (two adults and two children) has reached BGN 481 in June.

Such household needs a minimum of BGN 1 923 per month for food, home expenses, clothes, education and leisure time to live according to the normal Bulgarian standards.

The data comes from a research of consumer prices and livelihood conducted by the Institute for Social and Trade Union Research at the Bulgarian Trade Unions KNSB.

The increase rate in June is 0,4% and reflects the slight price changes, typical for the second quarter of the year. The main reason is the seasonal price reduction of some food items, especially fresh fruits and vegetables.

The lower electric power and hot water prices that were introduced on July 1 confirm the expected summer deflation in the country.

The deflation is, however, not going to be enjoyed by Bulgarian households, the Institute experts point out, due to the reduced industrial production, lower demand and retail sales, job insecurity and narrowing job market, and large-scale freezing of salaries.

Friday, 24 July 2009

BG Property News

Bulgaria Residential Real Estate Market Continues to Slump


The residential real estate prices in Bulgaria are down nearly 10% during the second quarter of 2009 compared to the first one.

In comparison with the same quarter of 2008 the residential market prices are down 22%.

The data was released Thursday by Bulgaria's National Statistics Institute (NSI).

During the second quarter of 2009, the price decrease was registered in all regional cities with the highest decreases in Ruse (14,4%), Vratsa (14,3%), Plovdiv (14,1%), Burgas (12,3%), Pleven (12,2%) and the capital Sofia (12%).

The average market price for residential properties is BGN 1 078 per square meter.

The Black Sea capital Varna has the highest prices - BGN 1 827 per square meter, followed by Sofia - BGN 1 745 per square meter, and the other Black Sea City, Burgas - BGN 1 472 per square meter.

Among the regional cities Kyustendil has the lowest residential property price - BGN 541 per square meter.

Uncle's View: I think the time is coming to, as a friend of mine used to say, 'Steam in and get the early value'.That is to say there are now some real bargains to be had, just came across apartments of 50m2 (for only 30,000 Euro's) 300 metres from the beach.Its getting pretty obvious that there are signs of recovery in the UK, and the Dow Jones breached the psychologically important 9,000 mark last night.Liquidity will start to come back into the lending market soon, so I am starting to feel more optimistic.

On the other hand, the latest figures for the UK economy have just been released and show that it shrank by a whooping 0.8% in the last period.Overall this is a 5.6% retraction, the worse since the Thatcher recession of 1980-83.

Uncle is always scrupulously fair, but I stick by my guns on the subject of the Bulgarian market.

The Spanish dream goes sour

Just been reading an interesting article about the problems faced by ex pats in Spain due to the collapse in the pound.One lady makes this interesting comment:

 "We've had retired people calling us and saying they are going to Bulgaria or places like that," explains Angie Russell, whose Union Jack company near Benidorm has been moving Brits – legally – for 22 years.

I have been observing this trend for well over a year now, and it does go to show that Bulgaria remains a great destination for those on fixed incomes.Although those of us already here, will have noticed the spiralling prices in the past few years.

I hope that the new arrivals make an effort to integrate, and to learn Bulgarian.However on the Spanish experience I wouldn't bet on it.So if you see anybody with an El Cordobes T-Shirt, a straw donkey and drinking sangria, you will know who they are.

I just hope that Del Boy and Rodney dont follow them !.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

New Bulgarian Cabinet Announced

Boyko Borisov, leader of the GERB party and future Prime Minister of Bulgaria, announced Thursday the names of the Ministers in the new Bulgarian government.

At a special ceremony at the Bulgarian Presidency, Borisov handed back to President Georgi Parvanov the mandate to appoint new cabinet that he received on July 16.

The new Bulgarian government consists of 15 Ministers. Former senior World Bank economist Simeon Djankov is the new Minister of Finance;

the GERB party Chair Tsvetan Tsvetanov is the new Interior Minister;

Sofia Deputy Mayor Yordanka Fandakova is becoming Minister of Education.

The biggest surprise in the new government is Traycho Traykov, procurist of EVN electricity distribution company, who will head the Ministry of Economy, Energy, and Tourism.

Sculptor Vezhdi Rashidov will be the Minister of Culture, former MEP Nikolay Mladenov - Defense Minister, and prosecutor Margarita Popova - Justice Minister.

MEP Rumiana Jeleva is taking over the Foreign Ministry, and the Mayor of the city of Vratsa Totyu Mladenov - the Social and Labor Ministry. 

Bozhidar Nanev, GERB MP and surgeon at Varna University Hospital will be in charge of the Health Ministry.

Construction businessman Rosen Plevneliev will be Regional Development Minister.

Environment consultant Nona Karadzhova is expected to be the next Environment Minister.

Alexander Tsvetkov, currently Deputy Mayor of the capital Sofia, will be the new Transport Minister.

Miroslav Naydenov is taking over the Agriculture Ministry, after MP Dessislava Taneva withdrew her nomination in the last minute.

Bozhidar Dimitrov, the director of Bulgaria's National History Museum is going to be Minister without a portfolio in charge of the Bulgarian citizens abroad.

Svilen Neykov, Bulgarian rowing champion and coach and husband of Bulgarian Beijing Olympics gold medalist Rumyana Neykova, will be in charge of the newly created Sports Ministry.

The GERB party, which won 40% of the votes in the Bulgarian Parliamentary Elections on July 5, will run a minority government to tackle corruption and the economic crisis. It has 116 MPs in the 240-seat Parliamentary. GERB defeated the Socialist Party of former Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev, which got only 18% of the votes.

Three other smaller right-wing Bulgarian parties - the nationalist "Ataka" party of Volen Siderov (21 MP seats), the rightist Blue Coalition of Ivan Kostov and Martin Dimitrov (15 MPs), and the conservative RZS ("Order, Law, Justice") party of Yane Yanev (10 MPs) - have made it clear they would support the minority government of GERB without receiving ministerial seats on the condition that it works for certain national priorities, most notably fighting corruption and leading Bulgaria out of the economic crisis.

Borisov's GERB government will be Bulgaria's second minority cabinet since 1989 after the one, headed by Filip Dimitrov (1991-1992).

Uncles Comment: If these people make a hash of it, god knows who the Bulgarian people will turn to, lets hope they get it right !.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Sad news from Sunny Beach

Tragically, a German lad drunkenly ran into a glass door in his hotel corridor.The glass smashed and a chunk pierced him.He ran up onto the second floor where he died.What an awful end to a holiday. This follows a couple of drownings and a poor girl from Sofia who was struck by lightening.

Simply tragic...

A nice touch !

Hammers name stand after Brooking

Mon 20 Jul, 12:09 PM

West Ham have named a stand at Upton Park after former midfielder Sir Trevor Brooking.

The Centenary Stand will be formally re-named when West Ham play Napoli in a pre-season friendly on August 8.

Brooking, 60, was born in Barking and spent his whole career at West Ham, making 635 appearances for the club between 1965 and 1984.

"It is obviously a terrific honour which I am very grateful for because this is my club. It will be my club forever," said Brooking, who is now the director of football development at the Football Association.

"The great thing was being able to spend my whole career with West Ham, having a stint as caretaker manager and as a director and then going to the FA."

Uncle says: Great gesture for a great West Ham player, great sportsman, and nice guy

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Could do better

EC Report: Bulgaria Lacks Will to Fight High-Level Corruption

Bulgaria in EU

The upcoming Progress Report of the European Commission criticizes Bulgaria for its lack of political will to fight high-level corruption.

This was reported Monday by the Bulgarian National Television, which claims to have a copy of the Progress Report. The Commission Report is due to be released on Wednesday, July 22, 2009 - a day before the GERB party is supposed to be ready with its new government.

While slamming Bulgaria for failing to deal with corruption, the 19-page report is somewhat less critical than previous reports of its kind. It does praise Bulgaria for certain successes in combating abuse of EU funds, the work of the Inspectorate at the Supreme Judicial Council, and of the "Kushlev" Parliamentary Committee to seize illegally acquired property.

Yet, the Report states that all the already known issues are still present in Bulgaria: lack of efficient organization to fight organized crime and corruption.

The European Commission recognizes that there are already some sentences in Bulgaria but the punishments the convicted people get are minimal because they are able to strike deals with the prosecutors, according to the law.

The assassinations in the street are continuing, and well-known criminals are either released, or get minor sentence, which makes them look invulnerable, the progress report states.

The Commission believes that many Bulgarian magistrates are unwilling to start an investigation when they figure out that the accused people have "good connections"; that is why the EC recommends that Bulgaria set up special structures for investigation and sentencing those responsible for high-level corruption and organized crime.

The Commission believes that the capacity of the law-enforcing institutions for fighting corruption and organized crime has not been increased. The report cites the 14-year sentence of the formal director of the Sofia heating utility company, Valentin Dimitrov, but also points to the delayed corruption cases against Asen Drumev and Veselin Georgiev, and the terminated case against Mario Nikolov, who is accused of abusing SAPARD funds.

The Report's part on organized crime points to the sentences against the Varna City Councilors, Hristo Danov and Veselin Danov, and the drug boss Dimitar Zhelyazkov, but stresses that their terms are minimal, and that the Bulgarian justice system is yet to show that it is capable of implementing stricter organized crime sentences.

The Commission also criticizes Bulgaria that 20% of the Bulgarian courts do not publish their verdicts online.

The EC Report does praise the Inspectorate at the Supreme Judicial Council that has achieved notable results in the investigation of disciplinary violations and systematic flaws in the justice system.

The other positive point in the Report is the creation of a joint team of the police and prosecution for fighting crimes against the EU's financial system. The Parliamentary Committee "Kushlev", which expropriates illegally acquired property, has improved since 2008.

Yet, the EC points out that the Bulgarian law does not allow the immediate freezing of the assets of the investigated people, which significantly reduces the effect of these measures.

The Report also mentions that there are 110 registered Bentley luxury cars in Bulgaria, and that special operation has taken place in Sofia as a result of which 10 money laundering cases had been started.

The present Progress Report of the European Commission on Bulgaria in the areas of fighting organized crime and corruption is scheduled to come out on July 22. The following report under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism for monitoring Bulgaria's post-accession progress is going to be published in the summer of 2010.

In the fall of 2009, the EC is going to publish another report on the absorption of EU funds in Bulgaria.

Uncle's Comment: The big problem with corruption in Bulgaria is that the people at the top, whom the EU is asking to clean up corruption, are some of the worst offenders.Most Bulgarian politicians view it as their right to skim off the public purse.Until the big names are put on trial AND convicted no-one will take the anti-corruption fight in Bulgaria seriously.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Anniversary of some very brave men

I promised you that this blog would not always be about Bulgaria, or some of my peculiar other interests.In order to prove that here is just a little mention of an anniversary, on this date.

On July 20th 1944 anti-Nazi conspirators tried to blow up Adolf Hitler at his Prussian HQ at Rastenburg otherwise known as the 'Wolfs Lair'.They failed because the bomb was pushed to the other side of a table leg from Hitler, and he escaped with nothing more than shock and shredded trousers.

The fate of the conspirators was anything as rosy, they were hunted down, tortured, and executed, in some cases being hung by piano wire.Here is a picture of the chief conspirator, Count Claus Von Stauffenberg.Among the other conspirators was Field Marshal Erwin Rommel (otherwise known as the Desert Fox).

The actions of these men could have ended the war months earlier, and saved millions of lives, and I suppose, if you are a German they are the closest thing you have to a hero from WWII.

Bulgarian Resorts do Marie Celeste Impersonation

The 2009 Tourist Season begins to resemble Blackpool in November.Twenty percent of hotels are closed.The rest are laying off staff in droves and, more ominously many travel companies are not re-booking for the 2010 season.

There are a number of factors for this, mainly the world recession and the collapse of the housing market, particularly in the UK.

However, another factor is that Bulgaria is no longer a budget tourist destination, especially in the resorts.The resort companies continuously push the rents up despite that fact that there are fewer and fewer tourists.This is then passed on to the holidaymakers in terms of higher food and drink prices etc, leading to less tourists next year leading to.......Need I say more. 

The good news is that, if you stay outside the resorts, prices are 60% lower.If you can get a budget airline and hotel deal then, as the parrot says, 'That's the way to do it !'

If anybody wants it Uncle can recommend a few decent hotels !.

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Hold the front page


Uncle is very, very interested in making this blog one of the main sources of information for english speakers in the blogosphere about Bulgaria.My aim is to make good, topical, informative postings every day. I am still smarting from the loss of the brilliant 'Frontier Times' which was effectively stymied by tight-fisted unwillingless to pay 2lv for a really intelligent, but funny newspaper.I think that samizdat internet journalism is the way forward.

To this aim, if there are any budding Hildy Johnsons out there, then please send in relevant copy and, subject to it being non-libellous, sane and readable, it could well find itself in these august columns.You will of course be credited for contributions, but of course the editors word is final.


Friday, 17 July 2009

Turf in Bulgaria

I am pleased to announce that my new business collaboration now has a website.Click on the title of this post to take you to our website.Or alternatively cut and paste the link below.


At the moment we can only deliver turf in the Sofia region and environs.We hope to expand to the Varna region later.We offer fully grown turf or growing from seed.Landscaping services are available on request.As you can see the website is currently only available in Bulgarian, but if you fill in the enquiry form, or phone, you will be answered in English.

Blog update

I have now finished amending the blog layout, to wit the colouration and fonts.The previous incarnation was a bit dark and unwelcoming.After a bit of experimentation yesterday, I think I have got it about right.But, you never know, you may feel differently.Opinions please ?.


Great Flight News

Just had an e mail from Wizzair saying that they will fly Varna-Luton all year round.Coming after the cancellation of the winter BA and Bulgaria Air Flights, this is wonderful.

Uncle is very happy !

Price Check !

EU prices double than in Bulgaria

Bulgaria offers the lowest prices of products and services within the European Union, while Denmark ranked at the other end of the table, according to 2008 figures by Eurostat, the EU’s statistical office. The average price levels in Bulgaria accounted for 51% of the community’s average. The Danish dug deepest in their wallets, paying prices 41% above the average. The statistics are based on end-consumer prices and exclude home purchase costs as well as products and services subsidised by the state or by non-government organisations. Prices in Bulgaria come closest to the EU average in clothing -- at 85% -- and consumer electronics at 96%. The levels in Bulgaria were also lower than in its non-EU neghbours, with only Macedonians paying less at 47% of the community average. Eurostat found that clothing and electronics were cheapest in the UK, where they cost less than in Bulgaria.

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Bread and Butter issues

Bulgaria’s bread supplies threatened by poor grain crop

Bulgaria could fail to satisfy its bread demand due to the heavy downpours of the recent days that has affected its wheat crop, said Radoslav Hristov, chairman of the National Grain Producer Association (NGPA). 

Only two weeks ago grain producers expected a yield of around 3.5 million tonnes with high quality, which has now shrunk to only 1.5 million tonnes that could be used to make bread, he warned. 

The floods forced producers to start harvesting in southern Bulgarian behind schedule yesterday. The bad weather kept machines off the fields, leaving a large portion of the crop germinated before it was harvested and much of it will be wasted to animal feed, Hristov explained. 

His words were confirmed by the farming ministry and certifying company SGS, which said that germination was coupled with a risk of mould fungi. The national grain and fodder authority, which is authorised to perform quality testing, will be only able to estimate the damage once at least 60% of the land has been harvested. 

Retailers responded quickly to the latest developments, with millers having inflated bread wheat buying prices to between BGN 230 and 250 from between BGN 190 and 210 two weeks ago, Hristov said. 

Given an annual consumption of 1-1.2 million tonnes of bread, Bulgaria’s bread supplies hang in the balance due to possible exports and mounting concerns about a poor crop in Russia. Farmers are also worried about fodder exports as the crisis has depressed demand in the largest consumers including Egypt, Algeria and Syria, Hristov said.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

'Too damn hot !'

Yes readers it is EXTREMELY HOT here in BG wonderland.Its already 28C at 9.30 in the office and the radio just said the high wil be 33C.

In this heat the only thing to do is jump in the pool and drink plenty of liquid.Since my pool is not quite finished I will have to stick to the latter.

Friday, 10 July 2009

Golf Announcement Important !

Breaking News..(You always hear it first from Uncle Bulgaria....well nearly always). Gary Player will be in Balchik on 18th July to open the Blacksearama Golf Course.This is one of his two 'signature' golf courses in the area.

Swine Flu Update

Bulgaria's Ministry of Health confirmed Thursday the news about two new swine flu cases in the country.

The first new A(H1N1) patient is a 55-year-old man who came back to Sofia from Australia via Singapore and London on July 5. He received the first symptoms on July 6, and is hospitalized in Sofia.

The second swine flu patient is a 20-year-old woman from Germany who arrived in the Bulgarian Black Sea resort of Sunny Beach on July 3 together with a 16-year-old girl.

On July 5, the hotel the two were staying at received a fax from the German health authorities that the two women had been in contact with a confirmed A(H1N1) patient in Germany.

After medical tests were conducted, the 20-year-old woman tested positive and was hospitalized.

Thus, the total number of confirmed swine flu cases in Bulgaria has reached 16.


Great Shopping News in Dobrich !

Carrefour to open shop in Dobrich

French retail giant Carrefour has wrapped up a deal to lease space in the Dobrich City Centre shopping mall under construction in the northeastern Bulgarian town of the same name. 

Sprawled on a 6,900 square metre site, the complex should welcome its first shoppers in 2011. It is being developed by international consortium European Trade Center, which is investing also in an office complex in Sofia and has a project in Stara Zagora. 

Carrefour cut the ribbon on its flagship Bulgarian supermarket on March 26, 2009 in the southern coastal city of Bourgas. The next should open doors in Sofia. The chain will operate also in Varna, Stara Zagora, Rousse and Pleven. 

With a 16,000 strong supermarket network in 30 countries, Carrefour ranks as Europe’s largest retailer. Last year it generated a turnover of more than EUR 97.7 billion.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

BG Election Result

Well readers, my political punditry skills were accurate as the new government is a GERB-Blue Coalition one with a comfortable majority led by Boiko Borisov.They say their priorities are tackling the economic crisis, fighting corruption and freeing up the suspended EU money. Public debt in Bulgaria is a horrendous 25% of GDP and they will have a hard task ahead.The economic situation here is such that GDP may fall significantly with falls in real incomes.Let us hope the worst is over soon and that this government is serious in its commitments.