All the tools and resources you need to export your goods across the world

The Bulgars, a Central Asian Turkic tribe, merged with the local Slavic inhabitants in the late 7th century to form the first Bulgarian state. In succeeding centuries, Bulgaria struggled with the Byzantine Empire to assert its place in the Balkans, but by the end of the 14th century the country was overrun by the Ottoman Turks. Northern Bulgaria attained autonomy in 1878 and all of Bulgaria became independent from the Ottoman Empire in 1908. Having fought on the losing side in both World Wars, Bulgaria fell within the Soviet sphere of influence and became a People's Republic in 1946. Communist domination ended in 1990, when Bulgaria held its first multiparty election since World War II and began the contentious process of moving toward political democracy and a market economy while combating inflation, unemployment, corruption, and crime. The country joined NATO in 2004 and the EU in 2007.


Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Romania and Turkey

Natural Resources

bauxite, copper, lead, zinc, coal, timber, arable land

Population - distribution

a fairly even distribution throughout most of the country, with urban areas attracting larger populations

Bulgarian (official) 76.8%, Turkish 8.2%, Romani 3.8%, other 0.7%, unspecified 10.5% (2011 est.)
SOFIA (capital) 1.226 million (2015)
Conventional long form
Republic of Bulgaria
Conventional short form
Local long form
Republika Bulgaria
Local short form
parliamentary republic
Geographic coordinates
42 41 N, 23 19 E
Time difference
UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time
+1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
Bulgaria, a former communist country that entered the EU in 2007, has an open economy that historically has demonstrated strong growth, but its per-capita income remains one of the lowest among EU members and its reliance on energy imports and foreign demand for its exports makes its growth sensitive to external market conditions.
External debt stocks
US$ 37,492,419,000
Total tax rate (% of commercial profits)
Real Interest Rate
Manufacturing, value added (% of GDP)
Current Account Balance
US$ 2,237,940,000
Labor Force, Total
Employment in Agriculture
Employment in Industry
Employment in Services
Unemployment Rate
Imports of goods and services
US$ 31,703,058,258
Exports of goods and services
US$ 33,305,165,158
Total Merchandise Trade
FDI, net inflows
US$ 1,272,750,000
Commercial Service Exports
US$ 8,319,500,000
vegetables, fruits, tobacco, wine, wheat, barley, sunflowers, sugar beets; livestock
electricity, gas, water; food, beverages, tobacco; machinery and equipment, automotive parts, base metals, chemical products, coke, refined petroleum, nuclear fuel; outsourcing centers
clothing, footwear, iron and steel, machinery and equipment, fuels, agriculture, tobacco, IT components
Germany 12.5%, Italy 9.2%, Turkey 8.5%, Romania 8.2%, Greece 6.5%, France 4.2% (2015)
machinery and equipment; metals and ores; chemicals and plastics; fuels, minerals, and raw materials
Germany 12.9%, Russia 12%, Italy 7.6%, Romania 6.8%, Turkey 5.7%, Greece 4.8%, Spain 4.8% (2015)
Country Risk Rating
A somewhat shaky political and economic outlook and a relatively volatile business environment can affect corporate payment behavior. Corporate default probability is still acceptable on average.
Business Climate Rating
The business environment is acceptable. Corporate financial information is sometimes neither readily available nor sufficiently reliable. Debt collection is not always efficient and the institutional framework has shortcomings. Intercompany transactions may thus run into appreciable difficulties in the acceptable but occasionally unstable environments rated A4.
  • Fixed parity with the euro (1 euro = 1.96 lev) backed up by large foreign currency reserves
  • Diverse productive base
  • Low production costs: good competitiveness
  • Low public debt
  • Numerous tourism assets
  • Governmental instability, fragmented political landscape and proximity to the business world
  • Corruption and organized crime
  • Mediocre effectiveness of public services and justice (influence of the business world)
  • Inconsistent use of European structural funds
  • Still-insufficient supervision of the banking sector
  • Lack of skilled labor and high long-term unemployment (61% of the total)
  • Low proportion of rural dwellers, Roma and older people in the active population
  • A relatively poor (GDP per capita = 45% EU average) and declining population

Our site saves small pieces of text information (cookies) on your device in order to deliver better content and for statistical purposes. By browsing our website you grant us permission to store that information on your device. For more information check our Terms and Conditions.