ASSEN ASSENNOV CALLED A MEETING OF CUSTOMS EXECUTIVES
The recently appointed acting Director of the Customs Agency called on Tuesday (February 26) a national meeting of all heads of the agency's departments, of regional departments, and of customs' checkpoints. The meeting was opened by the Finance Minister Milen Velchev.Mr. Assenov outlined the priorities in his work for the next three months. The successor of the former Customs Agency director Emil Dimitrov will continue to implement the strategy for the reform in the customs administration in the 2002-2006 period, worked out last summer. The new managerial team of the customs will focus on increasing the collectibility of revenues, the completion of the BIMIS info system, and the undertaking of necessary steps for harmonization of Bulgarian customs legislation with that of the European Union. Mr. Assenov pointed out the combat with smuggling and drug trafficking as one of his priorities as well.Meanwhile, the Finance Minister Milen Velchev declared that in his work Mr. Assenov will be backed by the Government. Mr. Velchev announced the stance of the Finance Ministry's lawyers that the contract with the private British consultants Crown Agents is not of a public-legal character and needs no ratification therefore. According to him, the Parliament's approval would be necessary if the Government was a party under the contract.