In a draft amendment of the concession contract for Bansko Ski Zone in UNESCO’s Pirin National Park, on 19 February Bulgaria's Development Council called the Council of Ministers to legalize the violations of the concessionaire, ULEN AD.
The amendment would basically allow a tenfold increase in the concession area -- from 99 ha to 1,069 ha. This would legalize massive illegal constructions on a territory 60% bigger than the current concession, as well as allow construction on further territories of the national park.
The coalition of NGOs and civic groups "For the Nature in Bulgaria", has warned Prime Minister Boyko Borisov that if the Council of Ministers adopts the draft amendment, it will legitimize one of the biggest crimes against Bulgarian nature and will in fact give UNESCO’s Pirin National Park to the mafia. This will be a sure sign that the laws in the country do not apply to oligarchs who hide behind offshore companies owned by the concessionaire ULEN AD, and that the state is working in their favour.
Environmentalists believe that the only way to restore legality and justice in Pirin National Park and protect the interests of the state, businesses and society, is to terminate the concession for Bansko Ski Zone and launch a transparent competition, without allowing further degradation of the national park's fragile ecosystem.
Read more: WWF