“Gas stations are using the moment to make a little more profit.” Thus, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Asen Vassilev commented the fuel prices situation on Nova TV.
He recalled that there is a body to control them – the Commission for Protection of Competition. Asked if it was doing this, Vassilev said: “Obviously not.”
“We have had several talks with Lukoil so that the wholesale price includes the discount, which is the difference between Russian oil and Brent. And the price in recent months is equal,” Vassilev commented. This was the role of the CPC. “I am glad that the parliament has started a procedure to change the Law on Protection of Competition and to change the composition of the commission in order to enter one that will do its job,” said the Deputy Prime Minister.
He also explained how the 25 cents discount will be given. It will be for private cars registered in Bulgaria or leased. The driver must show the car ticket at the ticket office. In this case, it was not possible to give the discount only to those in need.
“Where we can, we help vulnerable groups. The aid is for working parents with children, for pensioners the benefits are lower. Where technically possible, the aid is targeted”, Vassilev commented.
Asked when Bulgaria will give up Russian oil, the Deputy Prime Minister explained that this will happen when there is a technical possibility in Lukoil. The company said that this could happen in 12 to 18 months.
“Or when the whole of Europe gives it up,” Vassilev added. Our country has clearly stated that it wants to be among the exceptions, if there are such countries. “We have clearly stated that if there are exceptions and we are not among them, we will veto,” said Asen Vassilev.
Regarding the information that Germany and Italy have allowed their companies to open accounts in rubles for the purchase of Russian gas, Vassilev explained that the important thing here is not the state.
“Gas, which has replaced Russian gas, is currently cheaper,” Vassilev said, adding that it was never a mistake to give up a supplier that unilaterally changed the terms.
Asked if our country has received new instructions on payments, he said that as far as he knows we have not received anything from Gazprom. The Minister of Energy was more informed on the issue.
Heating will certainly become more expensive, said Minister Vassilev. However, it will not be 4 times more expensive. “10-15 to 20 percent,” the finance minister said.
He sees no reason for the price of water to rise.
There will be no increase in the minimum wage from July. “It is not wise to touch twice a year. From next year it will be calculated by a formula“, said Asen Vassilev.
There will be no tax-free minimum.
Asked whether our country would give the “green light” to North Macedonia for EU membership talks, Vassilev said he had not heard such discussions.
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