Medicinal Plants Act




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Medicinal Plants Act
Promulgated, State Gazette No. 29/7.04.2000, amended, SG No. 23/1.03.2002, SG No. 91/25.09.2002, effective 1.01.2003, SG No. 30/11.04.2006, effective 12.07.2006, SG No. 65/11.08.2006, effective 11.08.2006, supplemented, SG No. 94/16.11.2007, amended, SG No. 36/4.04.2008, amended and supplemented, SG No. 43/29.04.2008, amended, SG No. 80/9.10.2009, supplemented, SG No. 103/29.12.2009, amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/5.04.2011, effective 5.04.2011, amended, SG No. 82/26.10.2012, effective 26.11.2012, SG No. 66/26.07.2013, effective 26.07.2013
Text in Bulgarian: Çàêîí çà ëå÷åáíèòå ðàñòåíèÿ
Chapter One

GENERAL PROVISIONS
Article 1
(1) This act shall regulate the management, conservation and sustainable exploitation activities with regard to medicinal plants, including the collection and buy-out of herbs obtained thereof.
(2) The provisions of this act shall apply to medicinal plants in a list in the Annex hereto, regardless of the ownership thereof.
Article 2
The provisions of this act shall not apply to:
1. The use of herbs for treatment or prevention purposes;
2. Activities of persons using herbs, whether or not processed, for the production of medicinal products, foodstuffs and cosmetics, except as regards accounting for herbs purchased, sold or stored.
Article 3
Research, development, growth, and use of medicinal plants on the continental shelf and the exclusive economic zone shall be regulated in accordance with the provisions laid down in Concessions Act.
Article 4
Medicinal plants are a natural resource; therefore fees pursuant to this law shall be paid for their exploitation.
Chapter Two

CONSERVATION OF MEDICINAL PLANTS
Article 5
(1) Medicinal plants in their natural habitats shall be subject to protection from deterioration and destruction, to the aim of ensuring their sustainable exploitation as part of the natural vegetation genetic fund, of present or future value.
(2) Conservation of medicinal plants shall be operated as a system of measures and activities aimed at maintaining biodiversity of medicinal plants and their resources.
(3) Conservation shall comprise maintenance and conservation of ecosystems where medicinal plants are found, and of their habitats, as well as maintenance and restoration of viable populations of species.
(4) Deterioration of medicinal plants shall be a change in their population, which leads to deterioration in biodynamic indicators or hinders their natural restoration.
(5) Destruction shall be the deterioration leading to extinction of the population.
Article 6
Conservation of medicinal plants is focused on biological resources thereof in their natural environment, including genetic resources, separate specimens of plant species, populations of species and ecosystems, containing said populations.
Article 7
(1) Owners of lands, forests, waters and water bodies, representing natural habitats of medicinal plants, shall be under the obligation to apply the measures for conservation of medicinal plants set out in the relevant plans, programs and projects pursuant to Article 50 items 2, 3 and 4.
(2) In the case of deterioration in habitats of species or in populations of medicinal plants, used as a source of herbs, the owner shall take the requisite measures for restoration of environmental conditions, leading in turn to restoration of the population.
(3) In the cases set out in paragraph 2, as well as when plans, programs and projects do not provide for the conservation of medicinal plants or when environmental conditions have considerably changed, the owner shall submit a written request to the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate, which shall affix these measures.
(4) The inspectorate shall issue a prescription on grounds of the request under paragraph 3 regarding:
1. Re-establishment of the light, temperature or water regime in the habitat of species;
2. Carrying out certain soil cultivation and fertilization, irrigation, re-sowing or other measures to prevent spreading of undesirable plant species;
3. Terms and conditions for using the habitat.
Article 8
When the site or the activity - subject to concession - are different from the site under Article 3, a concessionaire shall have the obligations under Article 7, paragraphs 1 and 2, in case the right to use medicinal plants has been made part of the concession contract, or the obligations set out in Article 7, paragraph 1, where medicinal plants have been excluded from a specific right of exploitation.
Article 9
Exploitation of medicinal plants by methods and means resulting in deterioration of their natural habitats, depletion of their resources, hindering restoration of populations or decreasing their biodiversity, as well as in violation of the provisions of Article 27, shall be prohibited.
Article 10
(1) Certain wild species of medicinal plants shall be granted a special regime of conservation and exploitation, in case their biodiversity or resources have a strong tendency towards depletion or a risk indicative of such a tendency has been registered.
(2) The special regime shall be annually granted by 10 February with an Order issued by the Minister of Environment and Water, to be published in the State Gazette.
(3) The special regime shall cover:
1.Temporary prohibition of the collection of medicinal plants from natural habitats of species on the territory of the country, from certain regions or single natural habitats;
2. Establishment of annual quotas, by regions or natural habitats, for the collection of herbs;
3. Adoption and implementation of measures for the restoration of populations and their habitats.
(4) Herbal quotas in the Order under paragraph 2 shall be distributed among herb processors by the Regional Inspectorates of Environment and Water.
(5) Distribution pursuant to paragraph 4 shall be implemented in accordance with an Order issued by the Director of the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate on the basis of an Order of the Minister of Environment and Water concerning the terms and conditions for the distribution of herbal quotas, to be promulgated in the State Gazette.
Article 11
(Supplemented SG No. 103/2009) Collection of genetic material from medicinal plants under a special regime within natural habitats with the aim of cultivation shall be allowed in an Order issued by the Minister of Environment and Water or an official authorized by him.
Article 12
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Collection, buying out, primary processing of and trade in herbs of medicinal plants under a special regime of conservation and exploitation in violation of the provisions of the orders referred to in Article 10, paragraphs 2 and 5 shall be prohibited.
Article 13
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Herbs of medicinal plants under a special regime that have been collected shall be accompanied by the following documents until they reach the persons using them, whether or not processed, for the production of medicinal products, foodstuffs and cosmetics:
1. An Order issued by the Director of the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate pursuant to Article 10, paragraph 5, where herbs have been collected from their natural habitats;
2. A Certificate issued by the relevant municipality, where herbs have been collected from artificially cultivated medicinal plants;
3. Permit for exploitation of herbs pursuant to Article 21, paragraph 2.
Article 14
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Plant species that have been proclaimed under protection by virtue of Annex 3 under Article 37 of the Biological Diversity Act and covered by the list included in the Annex to Article 1, paragraph 2 herein, shall be subject to conservation in accordance with the provisions of the Biological Diversity Act.
Article 15
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The regimens and standards laid down in the Protected Areas Act, Protected Area Designation Orders, and Protected Area Management Plans shall apply to medicinal plant natural habitats located in protected areas; the provisions of this Act shall apply to their conservation and use.
Article 16
(1) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) For the purpose of conservation of medicinal plants within forest areas, preventive and current measures shall be adopted on a long-term and short-term projection basis.
(2) Measures pursuant to paragraph 1 shall include maintenance of soils, of a light, temperature and water regime within habitats of medicinal plants, as well as activities and regimes aimed at ensuring a favourable conservation status and restoration of populations and resources of medicinal plants.
(3) With regard to priority habitats and species of medicinal plants, including rare or endangered species, appropriate biological, chemical, mechanical and integrated methods of conservation shall be developed and implemented in certain areas or habitats.
(4) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Grazing of domestic animals in forest areas, in contravention of the provisions for conservation of certain species of medicinal plants shall be prohibited.
Article 17
(1) For the purpose of conservation of medicinal plants within farm lands:
1. All the information available on medicinal plants within the territory of the relevant municipality, on land suitability for their propagation, as well as the information on obligations and recommendations regarding the use of land, including the use of environment friendly technologies for propagation of plants in every municipality, shall be made available to owners and users of farm lands,
2. In case of changing the intended use of farm lands for non-agricultural purposes, environmental impact assessment reports or the opinions of the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate - where an environmental impact assessment is not required - shall specify the impact of the site and/or activity over the conservation status and sustainable development of medicinal plants.
(2) With regard to medicinal plants within farmlands requirements laid down in Article 16, paragraphs 1, 2, 3 and 4 shall be observed.
Article 18
(Amended, SG No. 82/2012, effective 26.11.2012)
For the purpose of conservation of medicinal plants within construction boundaries of populated areas territorial structure plans shall set forth requirements for the protection of medicinal plants against deterioration and destruction.
Article 19
(Amended, SG No. 65/2006, repealed SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Chapter Three

EXPLOITATION OF MEDICINAL PLANTS
Section I

General Provisions
Article 20
(1) Exploitation of medicinal plants shall be the exploitation of their resources and it shall include:
1. Collection of herbs of wild and artificially propagated medicinal plants;
2. Purchasing of herbs intended for primary or further processing;
3. Collection of genetic material from wild medicinal plants for the purpose of artificial propagation, for conservation out of the natural environment of medicinal plants or for re-introduction into other areas.
(2) Obtainment of genetic material from artificially propagated medicinal plants shall be provided for in Seed Stock and Planting Stock Act and also in Protection of New Plant Varieties and Animal Breeds Act.
Article 21
(1) Collection of herbs from natural habitats of medicinal plants shall be carried out in accordance with requirements herein laid down, as well as with provisions made in the relevant plans, programs and projects pursuant to Section II of Chapter Four of the present.
(2) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Exploitation of medicinal plants, as provided for in Article 20, paragraph 1, items 1 and 3, which is deemed to constitute a form of economic activity, shall be carried out on the basis of a permit.
(3) A permit under paragraph 2 shall not be required when herbs for personal use are collected within lands, forests and water bodies that are either state- or municipality-owned.
(4) A permit shall not be required either when medicinal plants have been artificially propagated by owners or users of lands, forests or water bodies, except in case of artificial propagation carried out by the relevant municipality.
(5) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The permit shall accompany the harvested herbs to and within the station for the primary processing of herbs and the storage facilities thereat.
Article 22
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) A permit for the exploitation of medicinal plants shall be issued by:
1. The Director of the State Forest Farm or State Game Farm with relevant jurisdiction, in the case of exploitation of natural habitats located within state-owned forest areas, as well as in areas which have been contracted out to such Directors for management, following payment of a fee to the State Forest Farm or the State Game Farm:
2. The Mayor of the relevant municipality in the case of exploitation within:
a) Farmlands included in the land fund and municipality lands that are included in construction boundaries of populated areas, following payment of a fee to the relevant municipality;
b) Territories, that are property of the municipality, within construction boundaries of populated areas, irrespective of their intended use, following payment of a fee to the relevant municipality;
c) Private farmland included in the land fund; any permits shall be issued in the name of the owner/lessee or a person authorised by them, without payment of a fee, with the right of transfer to third parties, either for free or not, under free negotiation conditions;
3. The Regional Governor, in the case of exploitation within farmlands, that are property of the municipality, either within the boundaries of populated areas, or which have been included in the land fund, following payment of a fee to the regional administration;
4. The Director of the National Park Directorate, in the case of exploitation within territories and water territories of national parks, following payment of a fee to the relevant Directorate.
5. Person holding a graduate degree in forestry, authorised by the relevant Municipal Mayor, and entered in the Forestry Professionals Public Registry, for municipality-owned forest areas following payment of a fee to the relevant municipality, as well as for those contracted out to the relevant municipality for management;
6. Person holding a graduate degree in forestry and entered in the Forestry Professionals Public Registry, for forest areas contracted by a Forestry Association;
7. Person holding a graduate degree in forestry and entered in the Forestry Professionals Public Registry, for forest areas falling outside those referred to in items 1 and 5 for which the owner holds a contract for the specific property
Article 23
(1) For the collection of herbs and genetic material from medicinal plants, either wild, or artificially propagated by the municipality, persons shall pay exploitation fees.
(2) Fees paid shall not be refunded when exploitation has not been carried out or has been suspended before the expiry date, laid down in the exploitation permit, and this has occurred due to a fault of the exploiter.
(3) Fees paid shall be refundable when exploitation has not been carried out or has been suspended before the expiry date, laid down in the exploitation permit, due to a fault of authorities, referred to in Article 22 and in the case of a force majeure as provided for in Commerce Act.
Article 24
(1) Fees for the exploitation of medicinal plants within lands, forests, waters and water bodies that are property of the State shall be determined in a tariff, approved by the Council of Ministers.
(2) Fees for the exploitation of medicinal plants within lands, forests, waters and water bodies that are municipal property shall be determined by the relevant Municipal Councils at an amount not to exceed fees under paragraph 1.
Article 25
(1) Fees pursuant to Article 23, paragraph 1 shall go to:
1. (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) the benefit of the relevant State Forest Farm or State Game Farm, in the case of exploitation of natural habitats located within state-owned forest areas, as well as within areas which have been contracted out to such farms for management;,
2. (Amended, SG No. 91/2002, SG NO. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) the budget of the relevant municipality in the case of exploitation of natural habitats located within municipality-owned forest areas, within municipality-owned land, water and water bodies included in the land fund;
3. (Amended, SG No. 91/2002) The budget of the relevant municipality, in the case of exploitation of habitats within forests, lands, waters and water bodies that are municipal property and are included, either in towns and villages, or in the Forestry and land funds;
4. The State Budget in the case of exploitation of habitats within farmlands, waters and water bodies that are property of the State and are included, either in the boundaries of populated areas, or in the land fund.
(2) Fees referred to in Article 23, paragraph 1 shall be used for:
1. Planning documentation under Article 50;
2. Activities for the maintenance and restoration of medicinal plants and their natural habitats;
3. Scientific research and monitoring of medicinal plants;
4. (Amended, SG No. 23/2002) Development and upkeeping of specialized maps, a register and an information system on medicinal plants;
5. Artificial propagation and processing of medicinal plants;
6. Training, publication of training materials, conferences on medicinal plants;
7. Other activities related to management and control, as provided for in this law.
Article 26
(1) (Previous Article 26, amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) An exploitation permit shall be issued in the name of a herb processor, either legal entity or natural person collecting medicinal plants for the purpose, either of sale or for genetic material from medicinal plants; it shall specify:
1. The type of exploitation,
2. The quantity of medicinal plants or genetic material allowed, specified per types of morphologic organs,
3. The area or particular habitat,
4. The method of exploitation;
5. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The term of exploitation;
6. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Other conditions relating to habitat conservation;
7. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The users, if they are different from the permit holder;
(2) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Where the permit has been issued in the name of a herb processor who is a legal entity, the permit shall specify the names of the natural persons with whom the herb processor organises collection; their number may not exceed 20.
(3) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The permit shall be issued prior to any exploitation.
Article 27
The method of exploitation shall be laid down in a Regulation on the Rules and Requirements for the Collection of Herbs or Genetic Material from Medicinal Plants, issued by the Minister of Environment and Water.
Article 28
Issuing of exploitation permits in violation either of the provisions made according to the relevant plans, programs and projects or of the special regime referred to in Article 10, paragraph 1, shall be prohibited.
Article 28a
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Natural persons and legal entities shall be prohibited from selling, purchasing, and transporting herbs or genetic material for which no exploitation permit has been issued under Article 22 and propagation certificates under Article 46, item 3.
Article 28b
(New, SG NO. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any exploitation of medicinal plants in violation of the species, amount, area, method of exploitation, and other conditions laid down in the permit referred to in Article 26, paragraph 1 shall be prohibited.
Article 29
(1) Buying out and/or primary processing of herbs shall be carried out at stations for the primary processing of herbs.
(2) Storing of dried herbs shall occur in herb storage facilities.
(3) Stations for the primary processing of herbs and herb storage facilities shall meet the requirements, laid down in a special Regulation jointly issued by the Minister of Health and the Minister of Environment and Water.
Article 30
(1) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Primary processing of herbs shall consist of freezing, drying, cutting, cleaning, baling and/or packing.
(2) (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The minimum primary processing at stations shall at least comprise freezing or drying of herbs.
Article 31
(1) A herb processor shall be the one who buys out collected herbs and/or performs the primary processing thereof.
(2) Herb processors shall be obligated to:
1. Notify the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate of stations for the primary processing of herbs and herb storage facilities established by him before undertaking any activities therein;
2. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Buy out only herbs for which a permit has been issued by the authorities and persons referred to in Article 22 or a propagation certificate has been issued.
3. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) To keep the permits and/or certificates referred to in Item 2 until 31 March on the next calendar year.
4.(Renumbered from item 2, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Keep a log record, registered at the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate, for quantities of herbs bought out, sold and available;
5. (Renumbered from item 3, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Provide access of supervising authorities, referred to in this law, for control over herbs available or subjected to primary processing and to requisite documentation;
6 (Renumbered from item 4, amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Submit by 20 January a summary of information on herbs bought out, processed and sold in the course of the previous year and their origin as per the relevant permit, as well as on their stocks available, to the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate.
(3) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The information referred to in paragraph 2, items 1 and 6 may be provided in either hard or soft copy.
Article 31a
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The log record referred to in Article 31, paragraph 2, item 4 shall be kept for each station for the primary processing of herbs and herb storage facility and shall be identified using a serial number, address of the relevant station for the primary processing of herbs and details of the herb processor, either their name, ID card number, and permanent residence, where they are a natural person, or their name, seat of business, registered office , BULSTAT or ID code and tax number, where they are a legal entity.
(2) The persons referred to in Articles 31 and 32 shall keep exhausted log records for a period of one year.
(3) Where the herb station or storage facility are being wound up, the persons referred to in Articles 31 and 32 shall be bound to notify in writing, within a period of 7 days, the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate, to provide a summary of information on herbs bought out, processed and sold before the wound-up date, and to keep the log record referred to in Article 31, paragraph 2, item 4 for a period of one year.
Article 32
(1) Buying out of unprocessed herbs may be carried out by persons, other than herb processors, for the needs of production technologies requiring unprocessed herbs.
(2) Persons referred to in paragraph 1, as well as those storing herbs in herb storage facilities, shall be obligated to comply with requirements laid down in Article 31, paragraph 2.
(3) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Drugstores and traders in the pharmaceutical, perfumery, cosmetic and food industries which have purchased herbs in the course of their activities, shall be obligated to comply with requirements laid down in Article 31, paragraph 2, item 6 and Article 31a.
Article 33
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Fresh or processed herbs bought out shall be accompanied by the herb exploitation permit issued under the procedure laid down in Article 21, paragraph 2 and/or the propagation certificate referred to in Article 46, item 3.
Section II

Procedure for Issuing Exploitation Permits
Article 34
(Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Persons applying for permit shall submit an application to the authorities or persons referred to in Article 22, specifying:
1. (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The name, ID card number and permanent residence in the case of natural persons;
2, (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The name, seat of business, registered office, BULSTAT or ID code and tax number of the legal entity and the details referred to in item 1 of the person who represents the legal entity in the case of herb processors; the names, ID card numbers and permanent residence of the persons to be entered on the permit in the case of exploitation under Article 26, paragraph 2;
3. (Renumbered from item 2, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Species and quantities to be collected;
4. (Renumbered from item 3, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The area where collection will take place.
Article 35
(Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The authorities or persons referred to in Article 22 shall issue a permit within one day of submission of the application, except where additional information is required, but no later than 5 days after application was lodged.
Article 36
Exploitation permits shall be issued in the filing order of the applications.
Article 37
(1) (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) For the purpose of determining quotas the authorities or persons under Article 22 shall assess the projections made in planning documents set out in this law, including also documents at the project stage.
(2) (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) When the documents referred to in paragraph 1 have not entered into force or projects have not been developed, the amount of quotas shall be determined by the authorities or persons under Article 22.
Article 38
(Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The authority or person under Article 22 shall refuse to issue licenses when quantities of medicinal plants under planning documentation have been exhausted, through a reasoned opinion in writing within a time limit under Article 35.
Article 39
A permit issued in accordance with the provisions of the above articles, as well as a refusal under Article 38 shall be subject to appeal by the parties concerned, following the procedure laid down in Administrative Procedure Code.
Article 40
(Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Alterations to permit may only be made by the authority or person who issued it, when a permit holder has requested changes with regard to species, quantities or the site for collection.
Article 41
(1) (Amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The authority or person under Article 22 shall withdraw an exploitation permit, if damage to or destruction of habitats of medicinal plants have occurred as a result of activities conducted by the permit-holder or by the persons entered into the permit under Article 26, paragraph 2.
(2) (Repealed, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011).
Chapter Four

MANAGEMENT
Section I

Powers of Executive Authorities
Article 42
(1) The management of conservation and sustainable exploitation activities with regard to medicinal plants shall be carried out by:
1. The Minister of Environment and Water and the Minister of Agriculture and Food,
2. Regional Governors,
3. Mayors of municipalities,
4. Directors of National Park Directorates,
5. (Amended, SG No. 43/2008) The Executive Director of the Executive Forestry Agency.
6. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Directors of State Forest Farms and State Game Farms.
(2) The management of artificial propagation activities with regard to medicinal plants shall be carried out by:
1. The Minister of Agriculture and Food ;
2. Mayors of municipalities.
Article 43
(1) The Minister of Environment and Water shall manage and coordinate the development and implementation of State Policy on conservation and sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants, including its integration into sectoral policies.
(2) In order to exercise his/her activity under paragraph 1, the Minister of Environment and Water, within his/her powers, shall:
1. Manage the development of a National Strategy on Medicinal Plants and shall put it forward for adoption by the Council of Ministers;
2. Coordinate monitoring functions of executive authorities with regard to medicinal plants;
3. Organize a system for control and assessment of wild medicinal plants as regards their condition and exploitation;
4. (Amended, SG No. 23/2002) Organize the collection, updates and submission of data on medicinal plants as provided for in Article 32 paragraph (1), item 1 of Cadastre and Property Register Act, and shall establish and maintain a specialized map, a register and an information system on these.
5. (Supplemented, SG No. 43/2008, amended, SG No. 80/2009) Together with the Minister of Agriculture and Food put forward for adoption by the Council of Ministers tariffs for exploitation of wild medicinal plants within lands, forests, waters and water bodies that are property of the State;
6. Designate medicinal plants under a special regime of conservation and exploitation.
7. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Following consultations with research and professional associations, endorse ratios for converting herb quantities from fresh to dry weight.
(3) A Consultation Expert Council on Medicinal Plants shall be established to assist the Minister in discharging his obligations.
(4) (Supplemented, SG No. 43/2008, amended, SG No. 80/2009) The Consultation Expert Council shall exercise the functions of a state and public authority in the field of medicinal plants and shall include representatives of the Ministry of Environment and Water, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, the Ministry of Health, the Executive Forestry Agency, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, non-governmental organizations, the National Association of Municipalities, branch and scientific organizations, etc.
(5) The Minister of Environment and Water shall issue a Regulation on the Structure and Activities Performed by the Consultation Expert Council on Medicinal Plants.
Article 44
(1) (Amended, SG No. 43/2008) The Minister of Agriculture and Food shall provide for the propagation, selection and plant protection of medicinal plants, as well as for their sustainable exploitation on the territory of land funds.
(2) For the purpose of carrying out the activities under paragraph 1 the Minister shall:
1. (Repealed, SG No. 43/2008);
2. Manage and coordinate activities with regard to propagation of medicinal plants through the organization of:
a) Selection, introduction, maintenance of varieties and variety testing,
b) Production and control of sowing and planting material,
c) Development of environment-friendly technologies of propagation,
d) Maintenance of collections and seed banks outside their natural environment.
3. Promote activities related to the artificial propagation of medicinal plants;
4. (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) License the importation and exportation of seed and panting stock of medicinal plants pursuant to the provisions of the Seed Stock And Planting Stock Act;
5. (Amended, SG No. 43/2008) Organize the maintenance and re-introduction of medicinal plants within lands, waters and water bodies that are property of the State.
Article 45
(1) Regional Governors shall secure compliance of municipal programs on environmental protection with the National Strategy with regard to medicinal plants.
(2) For the purpose set out in paragraph 1 Regional Governors shall:
1. Coordinate the development of municipal programs referred to in paragraph 1;
2. Be in charge of the conservation of wild medicinal plants within lands included in the land fund that are property of the State and issue permits for the exploitation of medicinal plants.
Article 46
Mayors of municipalities shall manage local executive activities with regard to the exploitation, conservation and propagation of medicinal plants, through:
1. Implementing the activities with regard to medicinal plants included in a municipal program for environmental protection;
2. Issuing permits for the exploitation of medicinal plants within lands, waters and water bodies that are municipal property;
3. Issuing certificates for herbs of artificially propagated medicinal plants;
4. (Amended, SG No. 23/2002) Submitting information to the Minister of Environment and Water in response to the need for monitoring and assessment of medicinal plants and for the establishment and maintenance of a specialized map and a register thereof.
Article 47
Directors of National Park Directorates shall:
1. Organize preservation of medicinal plants on the territory of the park and shall control their exploitation and reproduction,
2. Issue permits for exploitation of medicinal plants on the territory of the park,
3. Provide the Minister of Environment and Water information in accordance with the provisions of Article 46, item 4.
Article 48
(Amended, SG No. 43/2008) The Executive Director of the Executive Forestry Agency shall:
1. (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Control the exploitation and reproduction of medicinal plants within forest areas,
2. (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Provide for and organize activities for the conservation and preservation of medicinal plants within forest areas,
3. Provide the Minister of Environment and Water information in accordance with the provisions of Article 46, paragraph 4.
4. (New, SG No. 43/2008, amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Organize the maintenance and restoration of medicinal plants in forests, lands, waters and bodies of water within forest areas.
Article 49
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The Director of the State Forest Farm or the State Game Farm shall:
1. Envisage and organise conservation and protection activities for medicinal plants within state-owned forest areas, and well as within any areas which have been contracted out to them for management;
2. Issue permits for the exploitation of medicinal plants within state-owned forest areas, as well as within any areas which have been contracted out to them for management.
Article 49à
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The authorities referred to in Article 42 may transfer their powers to issue permits under this Act to officials whom they have authorised.
Section II

Planning Documentation on Conservation and Exploitation of Medicinal Plants
Article 50
For the purposes of conservation and sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants the following documents shall be developed:
1. A National Strategy on Medicinal Plants - by the Minister of Environment and Water,
2. A Medicinal Plants Section within the Management Plans in compliance to Protected Areas Act - on request of the Minister of Environment and Water,
3. A Medicinal Plants Section within the municipal program on environmental protection - by the Mayor of the relevant municipality,
4. (Amended, SG No. 43/2008, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) A Medicinal Plants Section within forestry plans and programmes under the Forestry Act.
Article 51
The National Strategy on Medicinal Plants shall contain:
1. A description and analysis of:
a) The conservation status of medicinal plants on the territory of the state as regards their range, genetic fund, resources, features of their habitats, conservation of ecosystems and habitats, level of exploitation and restoration,
b) Factors influencing ecosystems, populations, the genetic fund and medicinal plant resources,
c) Resources of medicinal plants together with information about their present or future value.
2. Prognosis about:
a) Quantitative and qualitative characteristics of medicinal plants and their resources,
b) The exploitation of medicinal plants.
3. Strategic decisions with regard to:
a) Possible directions to achieve sustainable development of medicinal plants,
b) Objectives and indicators to be achieved with regard to resources and biodiversity, tasks and activities ranked in stages and by priority, the means of achieving the objectives set, including those having an impact over unfavourable factors influencing the natural environment of medicinal plants,
c) Financial and other resources for achieving the objectives set out in item 3, b).
Article 52
The National Strategy shall specify requirements to the policy, plans and programs in economic sectors or activities, in order to ensure conservation of habitats, biodiversity of medicinal plants and of their resources within the natural environment.
Article 53
The National Strategy shall be developed for a period of 20 years and shall be up-dated each 5 years.
Article 54
The National Strategy shall be adopted with a decision of the Council of Ministers.
Article 55
(1) (Previous Article 55, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Medicinal Plants Sections referred to in Article 50, items 2, 3 and 4 shall contain:
1. A location description for natural habitats of medicinal plants, a description of their features, of the quantity and condition of their resources;
2. An analysis of the activities on conservation of ecosystems, including medicinal plants, in order to ensure their sustainable exploitation and the conservation of their resources;
3. Priority measures for conservation of resources and biodiversity of medicinal plants, including rare or endangered species;
4. Selection and regulation of territories which are not under protection, but require adequate management aimed at the sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants therein;
5. Proposals for the development of regional legislative acts on the ways of land utilization in compliance with the provisions laid down in legislative acts and plan documentation of higher ranking.
(2) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The section referred to in paragraph 1 shall prioritise medicinal plant species occurring in the area and being exploited economically, as well as medicinal plants under special regime of conservation and exploitation or medicinal plants of conservation or research interest.
Section III

System for Monitoring and Assessment of Medicinal Plants. Specialized Map and Register
(Title amended, SG No. 23/2002)
Article 56
(1) With regard to wild medicinal plants a system for long-term monitoring and assessment of their populations and resources and of their exploitation shall be established and implemented, aimed at due identification of negative processes, prognostication of their development, avoidance of adverse effects and determination of the effectiveness of conservation measures with regard to medicinal plants.
(2) Monitoring and assessment referred to in paragraph 1 shall be organized by the Ministry of Environment and Water and shall represent an integral part of the National Operation System for Environmental Monitoring (NOSEM).
(3) State and regional authorities, within their powers and within the functions of relevant administrations, shall be obligated to provide the Ministry of Environment and Water data on monitoring and assessment objectives under paragraph 1.
(4) (Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The Minister of Environment and Water shall approve:
1, À methodological description for assessing medicinal plant resources;
2. A methodological description for performing monitoring and assessment of populations of medicinal plants;
Article 57
(Amended, SG No. 23/2002)
(1) The specialized map and register of medicinal plants shall supply data on the location, boundaries, size and ownership of habitats, the conservation status of medicinal plants, the quantity of reserves and the level of exploitation of their resources.
(2) The map and register under paragraph 1 shall be public and shall be kept to secure the conservation and sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants.
(3) Data from Medicinal Plants Sections in plans, programs and projects under Article 50, items 2, 3 and 4, as well as data from monitoring and assessment under Article 56 shall be used for the elaboration and upkeeping of the specialized map and register.
(4) Regional Inspectorates of Environment and Water National Park Directorates shall create and upkeep a specialized map and register of medicinal plants within the territory under their control, and data therefrom shall be summarized and systematized by the Ministry of Environment and Water.
(5) (Amended, SG No. 66/2013, effective 26.07.2013) The contents of the specialized map and register of medicinal plants and the terms and conditions for their creation and upkeeping shall be laid down in a Regulation issued by the Minister of Environment and Water and the Minister of Investment Planning.
(6) Persons shall use data from the specialized map and register of medicinal plants after payment of a fee in accordance with a tariff adopted by the Council of Ministers.
(7) The terms and conditions for provision of data from the specialized map and register under paragraph 1 shall be set forth in a Regulation issued by the Minister of Environment and Water.
Chapter Five

CONTROL
Article 58
The Minister of Environment and Water shall control:
1. The implementation of the State Policy on conservation and sustainable exploitation of medicinal plants,
2. The condition of the medicinal plants genetic fund on the territory of the State and its sustainable exploitation,
3. The introduction of species of medicinal plants, which are not native.
Article 59
Regional Inspectorates of Environment and Water shall control:
1. The implementation of Management Plan provisions under Article 50;
2. Compliance with special regimes under Article 10, paragraph 1,
3. Activities of herb processors at herb processing stations and herb storage facilities,
4. (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The nature and quantities of herbs subject to processing and trading,
5. Conservation of natural habitats and exploitation of medicinal plants,
6. Persons collecting herbs or genetic material, with regard to species and quantity, as well as the methods and means of collecting.
7. (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) the permits issued by the authorities and persons referred to in Article 22.
Article 60
The Minister of Agriculture and Food shall control sowing and planting material from medicinal plants.
Article 61
Regional Governors shall control exploitation of medicinal plants within lands, waters and water bodies included in the land fund, which are property of the State.
Article 62
Municipality Mayors shall control exploitation of medicinal plants within lands, waters and water bodies, which are municipal property and are included in the land fund within the boundaries of populated areas.
Article 63
Directors of National Park Directorates shall control:
1. The implementation of Management Plans regarding medicinal plants;
2. The exploitation of medicinal plants within the territory of national parks.
Article 64
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The Regional Forestry Directorate shall organise the controls on the exploitation and reproduction of medicinal plants within forest areas under its jurisdiction..
Article 64a
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The provisions of Chapter Nine of the Environmental Protection Act shall apply to any cases of control powers not regulated under this Act.
Chapter Six

COERCIVE ADMINISTRATIVE MEASURES AND PENAL ADMINISTRATIVE LIABILITY
(Title amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Section I

Coercive Administrative Measures
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Article 64b
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) The authorities referred to in Article 64d or the officials authorised by them shall impose coercive administrative measures to prevent and discontinue administrative violations of this Act, as well as to prevent or remedy any adverse effects on medicinal plants and their habitats.
Article 64c
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Coercive administrative measures shall be imposed for any occurrences of imminent threat of damage or destruction of natural habitats or biological diversity of medicinal plants due to:
1. Violations of this Act;
2. Natural disasters;
3. Accidents or other unforeseen circumstances caused by human activity.
Article 64d
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) (1) Directors of Regional Environment and Water Inspectorates or officials authorised by them shall:
1. Issue justified orders for discontinuance of any exploitation activities in respect of medicinal plants and their natural habitats conducted in violation of this Act;
2. Issue mandatory prescriptions for measures aimed at the conservation, maintenance and restoration of natural habitats of medicinal plants, as well as the prevention and/or elimination of violations and adverse effects thereof by laying down timelines and people responsible for implementation.
(2) In line with their jurisdiction, the Directors of national park directorates or officials authorised by them shall:
1. Impose coercive administrative measures provided for in paragraph 1;
2. Limit or prohibit access to natural habitats of medicinal plants for a certain period.
(3) In line with their jurisdiction, directors of State Forestry Farms, directors of State Game Farms and municipal mayors or officials authorised by them shall impose coercive administrative measured provided for in paragraph 2, item 2, and communicate them to the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorates.
Article 64e
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) (1) Coercive administrative measures shall be imposed by a justified order stating the grounds for imposition, the type and method of implementation of each coercive administrative measure.
(2) The order provided for in paragraph 1 shall be subject to appeal under the Administrative Procedure Code.
(3) The appeal of the order provided for in paragraph 1 shall not suspend its enforcement.
Section II

Penal Administrative Liability
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Article 65
(1) (Supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Where in violation of Art. 7, paragraphs 1 and 2 measures for conservation of medicinal plants are not applied, as required under the relevant plans, programs and projects, the individual or entity at fault shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000 or, respectively, to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 3,000.
(2) The sanction under paragraph 1 shall also apply to persons who fail to abide by the instructions for medicinal plants conservation of the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate.
Article 66
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Where in violation of Article 12 individuals or entities collect, buy out, conduct primary processing or trade in herbs of medicinal plants under a special regime of conservation and exploitation and in violation of the orders under Article 10, paragraphs 2 or 5 shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000 or, respectively, to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 500 to BGN 3,000.
Article 67
(Repealed, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Article 68
(Repealed, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Article 69
(Repealed, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011)
Article 70
(Amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who, in violation of Article 16, paragraph 4, grazes domestic animals outside the areas or places specified in forestry plans and programmes shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000. The same sanction shall be imposed for grazing within protected areas under Article 15, paragraph 3.
Article 71
(1) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any official who issues an exploitation permit in violation of the terms and conditions laid down in the ordinance provided for in Article 27 shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 3,000.
(2) (Repealed, renumbered from item 1, amended, SG NO. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any official who issues a permit in violation of Article 28, failing to observe the provisions of relevant plans, programs, and projects, as well as of the provisions laid down in the special conservation and exploitation regime order under Article 10, paragraph 2 and in the order issued by the director of the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate provided for in Article 10, paragraph 5, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 200 to BGN 5,000.
Article 72
(1) (Previous Article 72, amended and supplemented, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who, in violation of Article 21, paragraphs 2 and 5, exploits medicinal plants for economic activity purposes without a permit, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 20 to BGN 1,000 or, respectively, to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 5,000.
(2) (New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who, in violation of Article 28b exploits medicinal plants with a valid permit, but outside the species, permitted quantity, area or specific habitat, method of exploitation and term specified therein, as well as in violation of any other conditions laid down in the permit, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000 or, respectively, to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 200 to BGN 2,000.
Article 73
Any person who exploits medicinal plants by ways and means resulting in the deterioration of their natural habitats, in the depletion of their resources, or impeding the restoration of their populations or decreasing their biodiversity, as well as in violation of Article 27, shall be liable to a fine of up to BGN 3,000, correspondingly to a pecuniary sanction of up to BGN 5,000.
Article 73a
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who, in violation of Article 28a sells, buys out and/or transports herbs or genetic material for which no exploitation permit provided for in Article 22 or propagation certificate provided for in Article 46, item 3, have been issued, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 2,000 or to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 3,000.
Article 73b
(New, SG NO. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who violates the requirements laid down in the ordinance provided for in Article 29, paragraph 3, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 50 to BGN 3,000 or to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 5,000.
Article 74
(Amended, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Any person who, in violation of Article 31, paragraph 2, fails to notify the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate of stations for the primary processing of herbs established by him, buys out herbs for which no permit or propagation certificate has been issued, fails to keep the permits or certificates within the specified timelines; fails to keep a log record of quantities and origin of herbs bought out, sold and available and their origin; fails to provide access of supervising authorities to herbs - available or in primary processing; as well as fails to submit to the inspectorate a summary of information on herbs bought out and on quantities available, shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000 or a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 2,500.
Article 75
Any person who, in violation of Article 32, fails to submit to the relevant Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate a summary of information on herbs bought out, sold, as well as on quantities available in store, shall be liable to a pecuniary sanction of up to BGN 5,000.
Article 76
Any official who discloses information collected under Article 74 to third parties and where the information is a commercial or company secret, shall be liable to a fine of up to BGN 5,000, unless he/she is subject to a severer sanction.
Article 76a
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) (1) Any items, including collected medicinal plants which have been the object of the violation and the items which served to commit the violation shall be forfeited to the state, regardless of their ownership.
(2) Sale of the items referred to in paragraph 1 shall be carried out pursuant to the Tax and Social-Insurance Procedure Code.
Article 76b
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) Where the persons referred to in Articles 31 and 32 fail to produce or are not in possession of the documents required under Article 33 shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000 or to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 200 to BGN 2,500.
Article 76c
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) For failure to implement the coercive administrative measures provided for in Article 64d, natural persons shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 2,000, whereas legal entities and sole traders shall be liable to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 300 to BGN 4,000.
Article 76d
(New, SG No. 28/2011, effective 5.04.2011) For any other violations of this Act, provided the act does not constitute a criminal offence, natural persons shall be liable to a fine of BGN 100 to BGN 1,000, whereas legal entities and sole traders shall be liable to a pecuniary sanction of BGN 200 to BGN 2,000.
Article 77
(1) Any violations under this Act shall be ascertained by acts in writing of competent officials, authorised by authorities under Article 42, paragraph 1.
(2) Any penalty decrees shall be issued by the persons under Article 42, paragraph 1 or by officials authorised by them.
Article 78
Ascertainment of violations, issuing, appeal, and amendments to penalty decrees shall follow the procedures established in Administrative Violations and Sanctions Act.
ADDITIONAL PROVISION
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