SEPTEMBER 18, 2006
Bright ideas on the Black Sea
The Black Sea coastline has long been a favourite place for people to take their holidays and as the countries bordering the Black Sea open up to western ideas, so ambitions are beginning to grow. There is word from Bulgaria that the city of Kavarna is planning to invest in a Formula 1 standard racing circuit to help boost tourism in its region. Tourist numbers in the region are still low and the majority of them are still Bulgarians but Kavarna has ambition to be Bulgaria's version of Monte Carlo. The city lies around 40 miles north of Varna and features a small yacht basin, a fishing port, a beach and a resort area. More resorts are being built and the local mayor Tsonko Tsonev is busy pulling in investment to construct golf courses and to let the world know about the town. Since 2004 he has been busy turning the city into the musical centre of Bulgaria with international rock concerts with such bands as Deep Purple and German heavy metal names such as the Scorpions, Gamma Ray and Masterplan. According to reports the plan includes a British consortium which has plans for a 250 acre site (very small for a modern F1 circuit) on land close to the coast between Kavarna and Bulgarevo.
The only links between F1 and the region are via Eddie Jordan who recently announced plans to invest in the nearby city of Bourgas where he is building a yacht quay, residential complexes and a golf course. In recent years low inflation and steady progress in infrastructure improvement has led to growth in the region and an increasing amount of foreign investment is now flowing in although there remain problems with corruption in the public administration, a weak judiciary, and powerful organized crime groups.
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