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Scrap dealers threaten to quit Bulgaria over new bill

Bulgaria – Keen to escape the provisions of a hard-hitting new bill, Bulgaria’s metal scrap dealers are threatening to move their businesses to neighbouring Romania and Greece.

A substantial grouping of 800 companies dealing in ferrous and non-ferrous metals is seriously considering the option of moving abroad in order to steer clear of the proposed 2013 ban on buying scrap of unclear origin and from individuals – an understandable response, according to the Chairman of the Bulgarian Association of Recycling, Borislav Malinov, ‘because of severe prohibitions which the bill envisages’.

Scrap metal dealer and recycling company representatives claim that, if the new law is passed, many companies dealing in scrap will be forced to cease their activities. They are calling for the existing draft Waste Management Act, prepared by Nona Ivanova Karadjova of the Bulgarian Ministry of Environment and Water, be withdrawn immediately.

At rallies staged last year, some scrap traders asked for a wide social participation in the preparation of a new law to favour the interests of Bulgarian society and the business sector that complies with the rule of law. Dealers pay taxes, they argue, and demand to see the identity cards of their scrap suppliers so client histories can be checked by the authorities at any time. However, the ministry says the strict measures are justified by the need to step up the battle against theft of ferrous and non-ferrous metals.

The new regulations are scheduled to begin coming into force this week.

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