site.btaAgriculture Minister Vatev Takes Part in Miner's Day Celebrations in North Macedonia
Agriculture and Food Minister Kiril Vatev attended Monday's celebrations marking Miner's Day in Kriva Palanka, Republic of North Macedonia, organized by Minstroy Holding AD. The mining company holds concessions for operation of nine deposits of metal mineral resources, including seven in Bulgaria and two deposits in the Republic of North Macedonia: Zletovo (Probistip Municipality) and Toranitsa (Kriva Palanka Municipality).
The event was also attended by North Macedonia's ministers of Agiculture, Ljupco Nikolovski, of Environment, Kaja Shukova, of Interior, Oliver Spasovski, Bulgaria's Ambassador to North Macedonia Angel Angelov, Kriva Palanka Mayor Sasko Mitovski, as well as diplomats from the Bulgarian mission in Skopje.
In 2016 Minstroy Holding was awarded the concession of the mines, which were then bankrupt, flooded and without miners and equipment, Nikolay Valkanov, chairman of the board of directors of Minstroy Holding, told BTA.
Through its company in North Macedonia Bulmak 2016 D.O.O.E.L, Minstroy Holding is one of the largest investors in North Macedonia. The two mines employ 850 miners from Kriva Palanka and Probistip, and together with the production logistics companies, they employ around 1,500 people.
At the stadium in Kriva Palanka, where the Miner's Day was celebrated, Kristijan Ivanovski, Director of Toranica Mine, which mines lead-zinc ore, announced that by the end of this year the permit for the expansion of the mine's tailings storage facility, which will be usable for the next 20 years and represents an additional investment of EUR 4 million, is expected.
"In Minstroy Holding through Bulmak 2016 D.O.O.E.L, the Government of North Macedonia recognizes socially responsible partners with whom the municipalities receive development opportunities, and the opportunity for environmentally friendly ore extraction is created through the investment in technology, said Shukova.
"Since 2016, we have managed to turn two dead mines into some of the best in Europe. I am proud that they have achieved results that at the beginning seemed unreal and the ore output of 1,000-1,500 tonnes reached 2,700 tonnes for the previous month [i.e., compared to before when it was 1,000-1,500 tonnes]. In 5 years, EUR 87 million have been paid to North Macedonia in taxes, concession fees, profit tax, and wages have been increased from EUR 780 to EUR 1,100 despite the recession," said Valkanov, who added he would continue to increase miners' wages and invest, expressed gratitude to the government of North Macedonia.
Valkanov presented awards to the best miners from both mines.
In another development, Vatev attended the unveiling of a Red Cross in Kriva Palanka daycare centre for elderly together with the North Macedonian Minister of Labour and Social Policy, Jovanka Trenchevska.