At a press conference, the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry presented its annual publication “Bulgaria in figures”®, which traditionally presents the most important economic indicators of Bulgaria. The publication provides important information about the country’s economy in English, with an emphasis on the achievements and the advantages of doing business in Bulgaria. It contains summarized data on the country’s GDP, foreign trade, investment, and labour market in the period 2014 – 2018, allowing for comparisons and conclusions to be drawn.
The current 10th edition of the publication also contains an overview of Bulgaria’s competitive position in the most important international rankings, with detailed information on all criteria and sub-criteria.
The President of BCCI Tsvetan Simeonov and the Chamber’s Analysis Team commented on the positive news for the Bulgarian economy.
Bulgaria has very good competitive positions worldwide by low taxes, 4G speed, and location which attracts outsourcing companies – among the top 10 countries globally.
Out of 26 international rankings considered in the brochure, Bulgaria has improved its positions in 16, has lost places in 8, and has kept the same position in 2 of them.
In the 2019 edition of the World Bank’s “Doing Business Report” the country ranks 59th, as compared to its 50th place in the previous year, losing positions according to the criteria “starting a business”, “paying taxes” and “closing a company”. Progress has been made in “dealing with construction permits” – from 51st place in 2018 to 37th place in 2019. The country also has good positions according to the “trading across border” and “protecting investors” criteria.
Bulgaria shows stable positions with regard to economic freedom – in the “Economic Freedom Index” of the Heritage Foundation the country goes up 10 places – to 37th place worldwide, in comparison to its 47th position in 2018. The improvement is due mainly to positive changes in the regulations for receiving loans, regulations in the labour legislation, the good fiscal health and the size of the state debt – these are the areas where the country registers progress. As for the “rule of law”, “business freedom” and “tax burden” the country’s positions have deteriorated.
In the World Economic Forum’s “Global Competitiveness Index 2017-2018”, Bulgaria ranks 49th in comparison to its 48th place a year earlier. The country registers progress in “macroeconomic stability”, “higher education” and “financial markets development”. However, it falls behind in the “institutions” criteria, which is also indicative of the lack of e-government.
Slight progress has been registered in the Prosperity index – 47th place in comparison to 51st in the previous year. There is a slightly better ranking in the criteria of governance, education, personal freedom, healthcare, nature and social capital. The country’s results are worse with regard to the business environment and economy.
In the rule of law classification, Bulgaria occupies 54th place out of 126 countries. Its best performance is according to the criteria of "open government" and "application of regulations", and the worst – according to "restrictions on government activity" and "absence of corruption". Globally, Bulgaria is part of the 23 countries whose results have improved.
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