Archive for December 11, 2009

Sofia Confirms Hikes for Blue Zone Parking Lots to 3lv per hour

Shortly after the bye-elections for mayor in the Bulgarian capital Sofia, the municipality has confirmed plans to increase the fee for parking in the blue zones.

“We will keep unchanged the blue zones in some districts, while in others the fee will go up several times,” the head of the parking lots department Marchelo Dokovski sad.

The information was confirmed by Sofia mayor Yordanka Fandakova, but she would not cite figures.

According to report the fee for an hour’s stay in the blue parking zones in downtown Sofia will increase from BGN 1 to BGN 3. To this the mobile operators add the price of the sent text message, except Vivatel, which does not charge the SMS fee.

All who want to pay their parking fees in a hassle-free way have to send a text message to number 1302 for subscribers of the three mobile operators Mtel, Globul and Vivatel.

After sending the SMS, the person gets a reply that the payment was successful. Five minutes before the pre-paid hour elapses, the subscriber receives a notification.

Bulgaria Bill to Track Internet Communication Passes First Step

The Interior Ministry bill for amending the Electronic Communications Act, which provides for total control of telephone and Internet communication by the Interior Ministry has been adopted at its first reading.

The bill was adopted Thursday on the first reading by the Parliamentary Committee on Internal Security and Public Order.

The Chair of the Committee, Atanas Atanasov, told journalists that during the meeting several issues were discussed in terms of making information from all mobile operators and Internet providers available to the police through, but he did not reveal details.

In France, which has a population of nearly 60 million people, there are about 5 000 authorizations a year for the use of special investigative means, with 40 000 telephone records investigated.

In Bulgaria, with a population of 7,6 million people, there are about 10 000 authorizations a year for the use of special investigative means, with 350 000 telephone records investigated, according to former Interior Minister Mihail Mihov.


The number of Internet users in Bulgaria has reached 46% of the country’s population by the end of November 2009.
This data has been provided during the Webit METRIX Conference in Sofia on Thursday by e-Academy, the Bulgarian organizer of the event.
Thus, according to e-Academy, the number of Internet users in Bulgaria has grown by 24% over the last year, and Bulgarians spend online about 20% of their time dedicated to being in contact with the media.
Internet ads are the third most trusted influencer for Bulgarian consumers after the recommendation by a friend and TV commercials. However, only 3,2% of the total budget spent on advertising by companies in Bulgaria goes to online ads.
Over 50% of Bulgarian users of Internet have made at least one purchase online. This has been announced by Monika Lasota, Director of business development at the Poland-based Gemius SA, which is the largest online research agency in Central and Eastern Europe, as cited by Tech News.
According to Gemius, the Czech Republic is doing best in Eastern Europe in terms of online shopping – 70% of the Czech Internet users shop online; the figure is lowest for Lithuania – 29%.
Gemius data also shows that Internet Explorer still remains the most popular web browser in Bulgaria with a share of 49%. Mozilla Firefox is a close second with 44%. Opera comes third with 5% of the Bulgarian market.
The situation with the browsers is similar in the other countries in Eastern Europe where Internet Explorer usually has a share of about 50%, and Mozilla Firefox – about 30%. Hungary, Poland and Latvia are the exception because Firefox enjoys shares of about 50% there compared to about 45% for IE. Russia is the only one where Opera has the strongest position – 24%, followed by IE – also about 24%, and Firefox with 20%.
About 5% of the total advertising spending of the companies in Eastern Europe are reported to go to online advertising.