Technology giant Hewlett Packard has chosen Bulgaria among 14 countries for the creation of its new global services support center, following a strong push by the country’s foreign investment agency (Invest BG). «The decision of Hewlett Packard to choose Bulgaria demonstrates the significance of our country as an attractive outsourcing destination for leading companies,» stated Invest BG Executive Director Pavel Ezekiev. The new center will start operating in June 2006, supporting customers of HP in Europe, the Near East and Africa. It will employ over 1,000 Bulgarian professionals over the course of the next two years. The Bulgarian government’s active support and the large number of Bulgarians well-educated in technology apparently convinced HP to choose the Balkan country over countries such as Ukraine, Slovakia and Romania. «The extensive support on behalf of the experts of Invest BG is one of the main reasons for our decision,» admitted Justin Young from Global Delivery, the corporation’s support section. «Invest BG ensured the institutional and administrative support of the HP project in the last few months. The Bulgarian government authorized us to cooperate with the company with a set of measures of encouragement,» added Ezekiev. The center will be based in rented premises at Business Park Sofia, on an area of about 10,000 square meters. It will be set up in cooperation with two US companies with an expertise in this field: Ajilon and Sitel. HP has already opened a pioneering initiative in Sofia, the «Technological Academy,» which allows anyone involved with information technology and communication to learn all about the latest developments in the sector. Those interested are able to be updated on the company’s products and watch displays in real time, beginning immediately, said the president of the company’s board in Bulgaria, Sasha Bezuhanova.