After protests in Bulgaria: The government commits to establishing a state-owned enterprise to reassign miners

By the end of the month, the Bulgarian government and the unions will sign an agreement for a smooth energy transition, guaranteeing jobs in the mines and coal plants until 2038. This was agreed upon at a meeting today between Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov and the leaderships of the two trade unions, KNSB and KT Podkrepa.

The negotiations were held under the pressure of a national protests by energy workers and miners in the center of Sofia.

We agree on almost all points in the declaration. There are a few nuances of how their proposals can be implemented, but these are more technical problems that will not be able to be implemented as written in the declaration, but we can reflect them in the agreement, on which we agreed that we will work and sign it by the end of September

Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov

KNSB President Plamen Dimitrov confirmed that they have agreed that the national agreement for a just energy transition will be signed in less than two weeks. The agreement will guarantee jobs until 2038.

Dimitrov announced that part of the agreement is to create a state enterprise by October 15, which will be financed regionally under the Recovery and Sustainability Plan for Stara Zagora, Pernik, and Kyustendil, and its goal is for the miners who will lose their jobs to be reassigned from the mines to this enterprise.

We received a concrete commitment that a state-owned enterprise will be established by October 15. It will be financed regionally under the Recovery and Sustainability Plan for the country’s coal-mining regions – Stara Zagora, Pernik, and Kyustendil

KNSB President Plamen Dimitrov

He emphasized that they expect to be signed and financed key mechanisms that can preserve employment.

According to Dimitrov, this is the only sure way that they will not lie to the miners and they will have work until 2038 and will continue to work after that.

KNSB and KT Podkrepa also want the parties in the parliament to become guarantors of the implementation of the agreement, if it comes to its signing.

This afternoon, the Prime Minister met with a representative group of miners and energy workers from the protest “For a clear and secure energy future of Bulgaria,” led by the president of KNSB Plamen Dimitrov and the president of KT Podkrepa Dimitar Manolov.

Miners and energy workers protested today in front of the Council of Ministers, and workers from the entire coal mining sector in Bulgaria joined the protest. They asked for clarity on the future of energy policy and limiting harmful emissions in the sector. The main concerns are about jobs in the coal mining regions of the country – Stara Zagora, Pernik, and Kyustendil.

The organizers of the protest from KNSB and CT Podkrepa are afraid of closing jobs – about 12 thousand in the Maritsa Iztok complex, with a tendency for them to become 15 thousand after 2030. The fears of KNSB are that up to 100,000 jobs from the sector will be indirectly threatened.

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