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Investment in Kyustendil

Kyustendil, a quiet town in the south west of Bulgaria has a rich and colourful history and is surrounded by magnificent nature and the Osogovo Mountain - ripe for property purchases. Kyustendil is a modern administrative centre that views its future in the expansion and growth of cultural and spa tourism. The immediate vicinity is full of untapped potential – it is reminiscent of an undiscovered National Park, which offers the perfect facilities for a variety of recreational facilities from walking and hiking to off road driving, hunting and riding.

The Local Economy

Kyustendil Municipality sets its key goal as “Creating favourable conditions for the balanced and sustainable development through economic and social progress and the transformation of the region into an attractive area for living, career-building, investment, and cross-border cooperation.” It sets out to achieve this aim in a number of way; through the achievement of stable economic growth; developing cross-border cooperation and tourism and through the regeneration and development of fruit growing and agriculture.
The region offers favourable conditions for fruit growing and has established a Fruit Growing Research Institute. The municipality aims to create large, new orchards planted with high-quality and highly productive fruits as well as establishing a regional market-place for its agricultural products. Attention is also being given to the improvement of underdeveloped rural areas by re-establishing and modernising agriculture and stock-breeding.

It is also rich in natural resources such as coal, polymeric ores and non-metal bearing deposits. In terms of heavy industry the Bobov Dol Thermo-Electric Plant is of national importance. Plans are also afoot to develop the restructured mines at Bobov Dol and this is likely to bring more work to the area. The technical infrastructure in particular transport, energy, water-supply and communications and in particular the development of alternative energy sources is also receiving massive investment. Support and help is available for all small to medium businesses setting up in the area and increasing employment here.

Developing Tourism

The Kyustendil Region offers favourable conditions for the development of tourism and its municipality is committed to developing this potential growth sector. The area offers many natural thermal mineral springs, which are strongest in the towns of Kyustendil, Sapareva Banya and Nevestino. It also offers excellent transport and communication facilities with the capital and neighbouring countries Macedonia and Serbia making it an ideal area to draw in tourists. Its rich natural environment and diverse resources coupled with a well-developed urban ecological programme will help establish it as a key tourist location for those looking for recreation, culture and sport.

Earlier this year, Kyustendil mayor, Petar Paunov announced that a new spa complex would be constructed in the town and that the project, which will be financed by both public and private funds, was worth around 1.2 million Euros. This is the largest development of its kind in the region and signifies the municipality’s commitment to developing tourism in the area. The complex, which will be built near to the Osogovo Stadium and the forest, will consist of six mineral spa swimming pools with a range of treatments plus a hotel with entertainment facilities.

Much is being done to create a tourist information system, which develops tourism in the areas of eco-tourism and the promotion of its mineral water and the medicinal treatment it can provide. Emphasis is also being placed on the areas cultural and historical heritage; sites of cultural, historical and architectural importance are receiving grants to help them improve their facilities and protect the local heritage for the future. Kyustendil is also set to become a duty-free area to attract those tourists from Macedonia and Serbia. Vacation villages will also be built in the nearby Rila and Osogovo Mountains and part of the Struma River will be developed in terms of recreation. Many roads linking the town with cultural sites like the Rila Monastery are being restored and a lift system is to be built to connect with the Sedemte Rislki Ezera mountain hut close to the Seven Rila Lakes.

The Property Market

There have been some significant developments in the town, which have had direct effects on the real estate market. Demographic changes have meant that younger people have moved out of the region to obtain jobs in nearby Sofia and this has lead to an increase in property for sale. Kyustendil is ideal for those investors looking for a holiday or permanent home in an area of striking beauty, which offers an ecologically clean environment and an agreeable climate. Rural properties are still very low in price – the average for the area as a whole is 21,700 Euros – and bargains as low as 10,000 Euros can still be found here. The Alexandrov Group real estate agency maintain that property in the area is grossly undervalued and that it is likely to experience rapid growth in the near future particularly terms of its apartment prices. Add to this the Municipalities efforts to promote and develop the town as a key tourist area means that for foreign investors, Kyustendil is ideal for investment especially for those looking to open a tourist related business. The town’s close proximity to the capital as well as Macedonia and Serbia also make it a perfect location for logistics businesses; transport structures are well developed in this region.

Pictures 1 and 3 courtesy of www.bulgariaphotos.net