Банкеръ Weekly

Briefs

ELECTRONIC SIGNATURE IS SLOWLY COMING INTO BUSINESS

The enforcement of the Electronic Document and Electronic Signature Act on October 7 did not stir up any particular enthusiasm among CEOs of local enterprises. This can be easily explained - the issue regarding trade via the global informational network could hardly excite firms, which have concentrated their efforts on mere survival.Nevertheless, this legislative act is an important prerequisite for improving the guarantees to those who would like to carry out distant trade. Thanks to the new regulations, the country could also expand its opportunities to participate more actively in the regional and global economic processes.The electronic signiture will foremost make easier the operation of the state administration. Therefore, the e-signature has so far attracted the attention of the Chief Taxation Directorate, the Customs Agency, the National Health Insurance Fund, and the National Social Insurance Institute. These institutions will be able to considerably reduce the bureaucratic operations and establish more reliable links with their regional branch offices. Several ministries have already announced their willingness to purchase electronic certificates for the needs of internal communication.The projects for e-services to citizens, however, can be counted on one hand's fingures. The only effective one is the one for submission of taxation declarations through INTERNET.Up to now business circles' representatives are also interested in the e-signature only for the purposes of inter-company communications, and not as means of contacting their clients. It is indicative that there are not yet company sites, offering non-cash payment using the electronic signature. A few companies, such as Shell Bulgaria, McDonalds' and Stambuli are willing to make use of the new service, as they have a well-developed network of offices in the country, which they could service that way.

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