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December 2018
Bulgaria's business, economy and politics explained in 128 pages of quality reporting

Stories in this report

Sofia’s successful guerrilla warfare against Brussels

So, what made Bulgaria the European Commission's darling?

Why can’t Brussels improve Bulgaria’s judicial system?

The Cooperation and Verification Mechanism designed to improve the judiciary has had no chance of generating meaningful reform in Rоmania and Bulgaria

Behind the prosecution’s smokescreen

The sudden flurry of conspicuous law enforcement activities is a two-pronged campaign

When it walks like corruption, when it quacks like corruption

While the Bulgarian authorities appear to be cracking down on some allegedly corrupt officials and businessmen, oligarchic interests favored by those in power receive a significant economic boost

Don’t investigate this

Bulgarian authorities ignore embezzlement of EU funds

Players to watch: Fifty shades of Conservatives

Anti-liberal nativism is the new black on the Bulgarian political scene and this could cause serious trouble after the upcoming elections.

The autumn of everyone’s discontent

Protests calling for better conditions for disabled people and higher quality public works, through to demands to "change of the system", have rocked Bulgaria over the past three months, but there seems to be little momentum for snap elections just yet

Who owns the newspapers in Bulgaria?

Most of their owners are semi-anonymous, print media lose ad revenue and sell their content to the highest bidder

Every breath we take

Sofia still faces a lack of efficient monitoring and initiative among the authorities to battle air pollution

A dance with anti-liberalism

There are enough signals that Bulgaria is on the verge of joining the illiberal camp of Hungary and Poland in the EU, yet the government dare not take the final step

A lavish budget in election year

Government finance is set for a deficit in 2019 even though next year will likely be the last in the current positive economic cycle

Don’t panic: Investors are not leaving in droves

Foreign direct investment has been decreasing for several years, but it has been partly substituted by local investors. The worrying trend is the overall decline in investment.

Pushing reform through the back door

The Ministry of Health is attempting to revamp the ailing health care sector through increased government intervention but mounting criticism may dampen its enthusiasm

Bulgaria’s economy loses steam

Gross domestic product growth slowed down to 3.0% year-on-year in the third quarter due to weakening exports and investment

The strange new look of Bulgaria’s biggest business association

KRIB has become a quasi-state structure under the chairmanship of Kiril Domuschiev

GP Group – a business very well connected

The story of the biggest construction company in Bulgaria is a showcase of local business practices

GPGate – a matrix for winning public tenders

A network of connected companies and individuals compiles, evaluates, and implements EU-funded projects

Landing in Bulgaria: a difficult mission

The country has only three properly functioning civilian airports

Deals of 2018: Weak Season with Mostly Local Buyers

Ginka Varbakova, Ahmed Dogan, Brendo were the most active Bulgarians in the deals, as easterners replaced westerners

SEE TOP 100 ranking: Southeast Europe’s top companies rake in record sales, Bulgarian businesses keep pace

The SEE TOP 100 annual ranking published by business intelligence provider SeeNews comprises the biggest companies by total sales in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia and Slovenia

Economic Disparity Between Regions in Bulgaria Remains High

A business revival is visible everywhere, but stronger regions pull ahead, while the weaker ones still lag behind

Unprecedented growth

The Gepard ranking of the most dynamic small or mid-sized companies in Bulgaria in 2017 comprises more enterprises that at any time over the past four years

Meet the cities: The northern island

In spite of its infrastructure woes and the lack of large new investments, Varna remains a point of interest and a city full of subdued energy. It’s time to release that energy and support it.

Is Bulgaria,s real estate market maturing or overheating?

The growth in activity and prices has noticeably slowed but there are no indications of a drop

New stress tests for Bulgarian banks

The European Central Bank will be conducting an assessment of six lenders starting in November

How the insurance sector avoided a financial crisis

The Bulgarian parliament introduced a temporary limit on the compensation paid for emotional distress in case of road accident fatalities

SOFIX – new members, same downward trend

BSE’s benchmark index hits 23-month low

Risky energy games

Bulgaria will re-enter two big energy projects – Belene Nuclear Power Plant and expansion of its gas transit network

Plovdiv is Culture

Bulgaria’s second largest city is co-hosting the European capital of culture in 2019. These are some of the program’s highlights

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