The Sofia City Court (SCC) issued an opinion on Saturday on what it believes to be an unprecedented statement by the Executive Minister for Economic Affairs Kiril Petkov on June 25, 2021 in the panorama program of the Bulgarian national television. Petkov’s testimony assessed an SCC decision as unacceptable, according to the widespread statement.
On Friday, Petkov said the SCC had suspended the registration of the newly appointed three-member supervisory board of the Bulgarian Development Bank (BDB) in the commercial register, the Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) cannot be suspended. “Petkov described the court’s decision as” the fastest we can have ever seen “.
The SCC is of the opinion that the allegation is not true, as in all cases of this type the court always decides within a few hours of receiving an application, unless it is filed after 4:00 p.m. In this case, the judge decided on the day the application was received, observing the procedural deadlines.
The SCC report states that “the suspension of the registration procedure as well as the application for the entry of the new BDB management in the commercial register are by law an accelerated procedure that is usually examined by three judges on duty according to a predetermined schedule” . Requests are automatically distributed randomly among the judges on duty and the court is required to rule on the same day. These postponements serve precisely to comply with the legal provisions for quick decision-making and do not represent a targeted “concentration with three judges”, “as Minister Petkov tried to suggest in his speech”.
The BDB is intended to grant loans to small and medium-sized companies. Shortly after taking office as acting minister of economics in early May, Petkov said he was shocked to find eight companies had received a total of 946 million leva in loans from the BDB. This violates the BDB law and the bank’s statutes. In mid-June, the BNB approved three new managing directors of the BDB, whose registration process was suspended on Friday.
The judiciary’s compliance or non-compliance with the legal act is only checked by the instance control and not by unacceptable interference with the work of the court through inappropriate political statements, stressed the Sofia City Court.
For his part, Minister Petkov said that from Monday he would submit a new registration application for the BDB supervisory board every day, adding: “I will give a speech to the public and the media every day about what happened to the BDB application” / BTA