The Bulgarian Association of Restaurants and the Society of Restaurants in Bulgaria: The Prime Minister understands less about tourism than the minister in charge who understands nothing

Акад. Николай Денков
Акад. Николай Денков. Снимка: МС

Prime Minister Nikolay Denkov proved that he understands less about tourism and Minister of Tourism Zaritza Dinkova, who does not understand anything about tourism. This was stated in a position distributed to the media the Bulgarian Association of Restaurants and the Society of Restaurants in Bulgaria. In it, they also pointed out that in a television interview he had stated that he saw no reason for the reduced VAT rate for restaurant keepers to remain in force. According to him, the number of tourists in our country is „large“ and there is no reason for the 9% tax to continue operating.

It is important for the Prime minister to work with figures and analyses and not to use the terms „big“ and „small“, the organizations are adamant. Then they explained:

„Because a country that claims to be a tourist country should defend and develop this sector, not wonder how to ruin it. The support should be done with real actions, not with a jacket, branded white boots and drowning turtles, as Tourism Minister Zaritza Dinkova does. It has been known from day one that the minister in question understands nothing about tourism and this has been proven every hour during her time in office. Supposedly, we were going to be managed by the best experts. We need actions like those in Greece, Turkey, Albania, Montenegro, all countries that are our direct competitors. Moreover, we not only do not find a way to advertise ourselves, but also do not find an answer to the frank black PR that is poured on us. Including NGOs close to the current government.“

The National Statistical Institute reported a decline in foreign tourists, but for Denkov, they are apparently still enough, the Bulgarian Association of Restaurants and the Society of Restaurants in Bulgaria pointed out. Their report from the last pre-pandemic year – 2019, shows a decrease of nearly 250,000 foreigners who visited our country for vacation in July. June data also showed a decline and August is unlikely to reverse this trend. The associations pointed out that the number of tourists really largely determines the VAT rate for restaurant keeprs and hotel keeprs – the more they are, the more favorable the conditions for the industry should be. Otherwise, in Greece, for example, there would be no differentiated VAT, it is also written in the position.

„Official data show that after the reduced VAT rate, the funds that entered the state budget from direct and indirect taxes in the restaurant industry have increased, not decreased. And to emphasize – in 24 countries of the European Union, the VAT rates in the hotel and restaurant sectors are differentiated. Permanently! That is why it is increasingly difficult for us to compete with them. And no, we haven’t forgotten that a year ago, in the middle of the summer season, the reduced rate for beer and wine was returned to 20%. Beer for bread! Isn’t that right?“, the organizations asked.

The Bulgarian Association of Restaurants and the Society of Restaurants in Bulgaria call on all persons holding positions in the executive power to be as selective as possible in the messages they leave on topics „which they really do not understand anything about, but are guided only by the politics of the parties they represent. We have always been there to explain what is important for tourism and how business, country and customers can go hand in hand.“

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