Bulgaria's Devnya-based chemical fertilisers maker Agropolychim received Thursday the long-awaited signature by Agriculture Minister Miroslav Naydenov clearing the construction rights for the company's waste depot.
On Wednesday, the company said it was considering halting operations and laying off all of its 1100 workers because it had spent eight years trying to obtain construction rights for the facility that was essential for the plant's functioning.
In 2006, Bulgaria's Council of Ministers passed a decision to change the land use, while the Ministry of Environment and Water issued a comprehensive permit in June 2010.
The construction permit for the waste depot, however, needs to be signed by the Agriculture Minister, who has jurisdiction over the land where the facility is to be built.
A special commission chaired by Simeon Glavchev, advisor of Minister Naydenov, is to be set up to determine the construction permit fee on the basis of the property's appraisal.
Agropolychim insisted that it had never received an official proposal for the amount of the fee from Agriculture Ministry.
Company representatives made clear that they had been waiting for the step for years, which had delayed the construction of the depot and had exposed their business to risk.
The special commission is to set the fee on the basis of the property's appraisal and a special ordinance on the matter.
Different structures of the Agriculture Ministry, however, provide different appraisals, between EUR 3.34 and EUR 15 per square meter.
The current fee set by the Agriculture Ministry amounts to BGN 742 811 and the company is to transfer the money within six months.