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State Gazette, issue 21 / March 13th, 2021
Corrections to the rules for acquiring Bulgarian citizenship were introduced with amendments in the law of the same name. A person who is not a Bulgarian citizen, spouse of a person who has received a permanent residence permit in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of Art. 25, para. 1, items 6, 7, 13 or 16 of the Law on Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria, and not less than three years before the date of submission of the application for naturalization has received a permit for permanent residence in the Republic of Bulgaria, may acquire Bulgarian citizenship if it meets the requirements under Art. 12, para. 1, items 1, 3 and 4 and the spouse has acquired Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization. A person who is not a Bulgarian citizen and meets the above conditions may acquire Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization, if not less than one year ago he / she has received a permanent residence permit in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of Art. 25, para. 1, item 6 or 7 of the Foreigners Act in the cumulative presence of one of the following prerequisites: has doubled its investment under the same conditions of the law or has invested in the country by paying in the capital of a Bulgarian company an additional amount not less than BGN 1 000 000 for a priority investment project implemented by the company, certified in accordance with the Investment Promotion Act. The acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by the above category of persons will be possible even when not less than one year ago they have received a permit for permanent residence in the Republic of Bulgaria on the grounds of Art. 25, para. 1, item 16 of the Law on Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria, have increased the investment under the same conditions of the law to at least BGN 1,000,000 and as a result of the investments at least a total of 20 new jobs have been created for Bulgarian citizens. The procedure for the establishment and the subsequent control of the above circumstances and conditions, carried out by the Ministry of Economy and by the Bulgarian Investment Agency, shall be determined by an ordinance of the Minister of Economy.
In the proceedings for acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization under Art. 15, para. 1 - for acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization without the conditions under Art. 12, para. 1, items 2, 4, 5 and 6, the application shall be accompanied by official documents issued by Bulgarian or foreign authorities, with which the applicant certifies that he has a kinship with at least one person - his ascending to the third degree inclusive, which is from Bulgarian origin. The documents must contain information about the names of the ascendant and his / her relationship with the applicant. When it is necessary to clarify facts and circumstances on the documents submitted with the application, the Minister of Justice may require the applicant to submit additional documents within 14 days of its notification or to instruct the Advisory Board of the State Agency for Bulgarians Abroad to establish whether the applicant is of Bulgarian origin. When such documents are not submitted with the application for acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization under this procedure, the proceedings shall be terminated.
The Advisory Board shall issue a reasoned positive or negative opinion within two months of the assignment, taking into account whether the applicant uses Bulgarian, whether he identifies himself as a person of Bulgarian origin, and whether he has at least one of the following circumstances: 1. part is from a Bulgarian community or a Bulgarian minority in another country; 2. originates from a settlement that was part of the Bulgarian state in the past or the Bulgarian Exarchate; 3. there are ascendants who are bearers of the Bulgarian traditional family name system. The structure, organization and activity of the Advisory Council at the State Agency for Bulgarians Abroad shall be determined by regulations adopted by the Council of Ministers.
The proposals for acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization for persons who do not meet the conditions under Art. 12, if the Republic of Bulgaria has an interest in naturalization or if the person has special merits in the social and economic sphere, in the field of science, technology, culture or sports, they must be motivated, indicating the specific interest of the Republic of Bulgaria in the naturalization of the person or his specific contribution in the respective field in which the person has special merits. Within one month from the occurrence of the change in the facts and circumstances related to the acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization, release from Bulgarian citizenship or restoration of Bulgarian citizenship, respectively within 14 days in the event of a change in the facts and circumstances related to the investments that have become grounds for naturalization, the persons are obliged to notify the Ministry of Justice and to present the documents proving the change. The conditions and the procedure for notification shall be determined by an ordinance of the Minister of Economy. Where it is necessary to clarify facts and circumstances relating to the evidence submitted in the applications and proposals, or where the applicant poses a threat to public policy, public morality, public health or national security, the Citizenship Council may require applicants to submit additional documents or to instruct the representative of the institution concerned to carry out an inspection. The Ministry of Interior and the State Agency for National Security shall submit updated opinions to the Ministry of Justice no later than the day of the meeting of the Citizenship Council, when after the expression of their initial written opinions there has been a change in the facts and circumstances. The State Agency for Bulgarians Abroad creates and maintains an electronic register with data of the persons for whom the Advisory Council has established Bulgarian origin. The procedure for keeping, storing and accessing the register shall be determined by an ordinance of the Council of Ministers.
The additional provisions in the Law on Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria also make changes in the direction of investment promotion. Long-term residence permits can be obtained by foreigners who hold a visa, have a certificate issued by the Ministry of Economy for a high-tech and / or innovative project called “Startup Visa”, and after issuing a long-stay visa have become partners or shareholders in Bulgarian trade company, and who own not less than 50 per cent of the capital of the company, the subject of activity of which is declared at the time of issuance of the certificate. The Ministry of Economy shall immediately notify the Migration Directorate of any change in the circumstances of the issued certificate for a high-tech and / or innovative project, leading to non-compliance with the requirements for issuing the certificate, which is grounds for revocation of the granted right of residence. The conditions and the procedure for issuing, extending and revoking the certificate for high-tech and / or innovative project shall be determined by an ordinance of the Council of Ministers. Foreigners who have made an investment or increased their investment by acquiring: shares or bonds of Bulgarian companies traded on a regulated market or a multilateral trading system in the Republic of Bulgaria, at a market value not less than, will also be able to obtain a permanent residence permit. BGN 2,000,000; rights under concession contracts on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria with a contract value of not less than BGN 1,000,000; units or shares with a value of not less than BGN 1,000,000 in collective investment schemes originating in the Republic of Bulgaria, operating in accordance with the Law on the Activity of Collective Investment Schemes and Other Collective Investment Enterprises, and provided that: the net value of the assets of each collective investment scheme is worth not less than BGN 5,000,000; the collective investment scheme has received a license or permission from the Financial Supervision Commission; their investment strategy is focused mainly on investments in shares and / or bonds. Foreigners who have made an investment or increased their investment by acquiring shares or stocks worth not less than BGN 1,000,000 in alternative investment funds established in the Republic of Bulgaria, managed by persons who manage, will also be able to obtain a permanent residence permit. alternative investment funds, originating in the Republic of Bulgaria, operating in accordance with the Law on the Activity of Collective Investment Schemes and Other Collective Investment Enterprises, and provided that: the assets of each fund are worth not less than BGN 3,000,000 .; the alternative investment funds and the persons who manage alternative investment funds are licensed or registered by the Financial Supervision Commission; cc) their investment strategy is focused mainly on investments in Bulgarian assets and they invest only in shares, stocks and bonds of Bulgarian companies, including joint stock companies with special investment purpose; invested in the country by depositing in the capital of a Bulgarian company an amount of not less than BGN 2,000,000 for a priority investment project implemented by the company, certified under the terms and conditions of the Investment Promotion Act, which is certified by the Ministry of the economy. The procedure for establishing the above circumstances and conditions, as well as the conditions and the procedure for carrying out inspection, assessment and preliminary approval for making investments shall be determined by the regulations for application of the law.
The Law on Industrial Parks regulates the status, the conditions and the order for their creation, construction, functioning and development. The purpose of the law is to ensure: creation of conditions for stimulating the investors to carry out production activity in industrial parks; creating a favorable institutional environment for ecological productions, innovations in production activities for development of productions and services with high added value and improved working conditions and for improvement of the economic efficiency of the enterprises; stimulating investments in high-tech productions and services by providing conditions in industrial parks for the implementation of research and development, innovation and technology transfer; attracting and stimulating investments for balanced social and economic development of the regions and municipalities. The creation, operation and development of industrial parks is based on the following principles: publicity and transparency of activities and information related to the creation, construction, operation and development of industrial parks; equality of industrial parks regardless of ownership, operator or investors; competitiveness in choosing an industrial park operator, which is created by the state and / or the municipality; state support for the creation of industrial parks and incentives to attract investment in industrial parks in accordance with current legislation.
An industrial park is a separate territory located in one or more municipalities, for which structural, technical and organizational conditions for production activities are provided. The territory of the industrial park is differentiated and regulated by a specialized detailed development plan of the industrial park, hereinafter referred to as the “PUP of the Project”, as a production development zone. The territory of an industrial park cannot be less than 300 decares. with the following exceptions to reach a lower limit of 100 decares, when the industrial park is specialized for high-tech activities within the meaning of § 1, item 11 of the additional provisions of the Investment Promotion Act and is divided into a territory of “high-tech production zone” the meaning of the ordinance under Art. 13, para. 1 of the Spatial Planning Act; to be less than 100 decares, but not less than 10 decares, when the industrial park is specialized for high-tech activities in the sense of § 1, item 11, letter “b” of the additional provisions of the Investment Promotion Act.
The structure of the territory of the industrial park, the development zones and the territories with development regime and the purpose of the land properties according to art. 112 of the Spatial Planning Act. The industrial park consists of regulated land properties intended for production activities. Regulated land properties with other purpose are allowed in the industrial park - for auxiliary and service activities related to the functioning of the park, including traffic and transport and other technical infrastructure, for public service activities, for green areas and for special sites, such as the general their area may not be equal to or greater than half the area of the park. When registering an industrial park, it is not allowed to include in its territory land properties, which are subject to litigation for real rights. On the territory of an industrial park an internal technical infrastructure must be provided, which should serve only activities carried out on the territory of the park and its connection with the elements of the technical infrastructure under Art. 64, para. 1 of the Spatial Planning Act. An industrial park or part of it may fall into a protected area in compliance with the requirements set by the applicable legislation. The internal technical infrastructure of the industrial park includes at least: transport technical infrastructure of the industrial park; water supply and sewerage network on the territory of the industrial park; electric network.
An industrial park operator is a person who performs the activities for operation of the industrial park. When the owner of the industrial park is the state or the municipality, the operator may be: a public enterprise - a commercial company, the sole owner of the capital of which is the state or the municipality; concessionaire, determined by the order of the Concessions Act. When the owner of the industrial park is the state and one or more municipalities, or two or more municipalities, the operator may be: public enterprise - a commercial company with state and municipal or municipal participation in the capital; concessionaire of a joint concession under the Concessions Act. When the owner of the industrial park is a legal entity registered as a trader or an association, the functions of an operator shall be performed by the owner or by another commercial company. Where the functions of the operator are not performed by the owner of the industrial park, the relationship between the owner and the operator shall be governed by a contract for the outsourcing of the activities of the industrial park, hereinafter referred to as the “operating contract”. When the operator is a concessionaire, the activities for operation of the industrial park shall be assigned with the concession contract under the conditions and by the order of the Concessions Act. An investor in an industrial park is a trader within the meaning of the Commercial Law, who carries out production activity in the park on the basis of a business contract concluded with the operator under the terms of this law and the regulations for the overall organization in the industrial park. An industrial park partner is a person who supports the functioning and development of the industrial park under a contract with the operator. Consumers are investors and partners who operate on the territory of the industrial park. The law regulates in detail the procedure for the establishment, operation and development of industrial parks.
The Law on Special Investment Purpose Companies and on Securitization Companies regulates: their establishment, licensing, activity, transformation and termination; the activities of the initiators, original creditors and sponsors in the securitisations within the meaning of Regulation (EU) 2017/2402 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 12 December 2017 establishing a common framework for securitisations and establishing a specific framework for simplified, transparent and transparent standardized securitisations; the activities of agents verifying compliance with the requirements for simplified, transparent and standardized securitisations, hereinafter referred to as “TSO compliance agents”; state supervision to ensure compliance with this law. The objectives of the chacon are to create conditions for the development of investment in real estate and receivables, for the development of the market of simplified, transparent and standardized (TSO) securitisations within the meaning of Regulation (EU) 2017/2402, as well as ensuring protection of interests of investors in special purpose vehicles and in securitization companies. The regulation and supervision of the activities and persons under Title Two shall be carried out by the Financial Supervision Commission through its line deputy chairman.
The special investment purpose company is a joint-stock company which, under the terms and conditions of this Act, invests the funds raised through the issuance of securities in real estate or receivables. The company name of the special investment purpose company includes the designation “joint stock company with special investment purpose”. A person who does not meet the requirements of this Title may not include in its name the designation “joint stock company with a special investment purpose”. The special investment purpose company may perform the following activities: raising funds by issuing securities; purchase of real estate and real rights over real estate, construction and improvements for the purpose of providing them for management, renting, leasing or leasing and their sale or purchase and sale of receivables. The special investment purpose company may not perform other activities than those specified and directly related to their implementation, unless permitted by this law. The special purpose vehicle may invest only in real estate or only in receivables. (4) The special investment purpose company may not acquire real estates or receivables, which are subject to legal dispute. The real estate acquired by the company for special investment purposes must be located on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria or on the territory of another Member State. Receivables acquired by the special investment purpose company must: belong to local persons; are not subject to enforcement.
A securitization company is a special purpose company - securitization within the meaning of Art. 2, item 2 of Regulation (EU) 2017/2402. A securitization company is established as a joint stock securitization company. The name of a securitization company includes the designation “special purpose vehicle - securitization” or the abbreviation ” jscs “. A person who is not a securitization company may not use in its name, in its advertising or in any other activity the designation “securitization company”, “special purpose vehicle - securitization” or the abbreviation “jscs”, “joint stock company for securitization”. “Or other equivalent words and expressions in Bulgarian or in a foreign language, meaning carrying out activity as a securitization company. The securitization company is obliged to separate its obligations from the obligations of the initiator and the sponsor. Base exposures eligible for securitization. Base exposures subject to securitization may not be subject to enforcement. Up to 30 percent of the underlying exposures subject to securitization may be the subject of litigation, but only if no more than three years have elapsed since the securitization of the respective asset. Offering bonds for securitisations to non-professional clients Art. 37. Bonds for securitisations may not be offered to non-professional clients according to § 1, item 11 of the additional provisions of the Markets in Financial Instruments Act, except when all the conditions of Art. 3 of Regulation (EU) 2017/2402.
The law regulates in detail the procedures for establishment, licensing, management and supervision of special investment purpose companies and securitization companies, and there is a wide range of administrative and penal provisions for sanctioning violations.