Statistical information Bulgaria 1996Bulgaria

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Bulgaria - Introduction 1996
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Background: A Slavic state, Bulgaria achieved independence in 1908 after 500 years of Ottoman rule. Bulgaria fought on the losing side in both World Wars. After World War II it fell within the Soviet sphere of influence. Communist domination ended in 1991 with the dissolution of the USSR, and Bulgaria began the contentious process of moving toward political democracy and a market economy. In addition to the problems of structural economic reform, particularly privatization, Bulgaria faces the serious issues of keeping inflation under control and unemployment, combatting corruption, and curbing black-market and mafia-style crime.

Bulgaria - Geography 1996
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Location: Southeastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Romania and Turkey

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 110,910 km²
Land: 110,550 km²
Comparative: slightly larger than Tennessee

Land boundaries: Total 1,808 km, Greece 494 km, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia 148 km, Romania 608 km, Serbia and Montenegro 318 km (all with Serbia), Turkey 240 km

Coastline: 354 km

Maritime claims
Contiguous zone: 24 nm
Exclusive economic zone: 200 nm
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: Temperate; cold, damp winters; hot, dry summers

Terrain: Mostly mountains with lowlands in north and southeast
Lowest point: Black Sea 0 m
Highest point: Musala 2,925 m


Natural resources:
Arable land

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 34%
Permanent crops: 3%
Permanent pastures: 18%
Forests and woodland: 35%
Other: 10%

Irrigated land: 10 km² (1989 est.)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Bulgaria - People 1996
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8,612,757 (July 1996 est.)
8,775,198 (July 1995 est.)

Growth rate:
0.46% (1996 est.)
-0.25% (1995 est.)

Noun: Bulgarian(s)
Adjective: Bulgarian

Ethnic groups:
Bulgarian 85.3%
Turk 8.5%
Gypsy 2.6%
Macedonian 2.5%
Armenian 0.3%
Russian 0.2%
Other 0.6%

Languages: Bulgarian; secondary languages closely correspond to ethnic breakdown

Bulgarian Orthodox 85%
Muslim 13%
Jewish 0.8%
Roman Catholic 0.5%
Uniate Catholic 0.2%
other 0.5%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years:
17% (male 769,025; female 732,119) (July 1996 est.)
19% (male 841,697; female 800,413) (July 1995 est.)

15-64 years:
68% (male 2,891,197; female 2,923,440) (July 1996 est.)
66% (male 2,910,133; female 2,927,880) (July 1995 est.)

65 years and over:
15% (male 561,944; female 735,032) (July 1996 est.)
15% (male 559,369; female 735,706) (July 1995 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
0.46% (1996 est.)
-0.25% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
8.33 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
11.75 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
13.55 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
11.31 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
9.81 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
-2.91 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: air pollution from industrial emissions; rivers polluted from raw sewage, heavy metals, detergents; deforestation; forest damage from air pollution and resulting acid rain; soil contamination from heavy metals from metallurgical plants and industrial wastes
Current issues Natural hazards: earthquakes, landslides
International agreements: party to_Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Antarctic Treaty, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands; signed, but not ratified_Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Law of the Sea
International agreements note: Strategic location near Turkish Straits; controls key land routes from Europe to Middle East and Asia

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
All ages:
0.96 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:15.7 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
11.4 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 71 years (1996 est.), 73.68 years (1995 est.)
Male: 67.07 years (1996 est.), 70.43 years (195 est.)
Female: 75.12 years (1996 est.), 77.1 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
1.17 children born/woman (1996 est.)
1.71 children born/woman (1995 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over that can read and write (1992)
Total population: 98%
Male: 99%
Female: 97%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Bulgaria - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: Republic of Bulgaria
Conventional short form: Bulgaria
Local short form: Balgarija

Government type: Emerging democracy

Capital: Sofia

Administrative divisions: 9 provinces (oblasti, singular_oblast; Burgas, Grad Sofiya, Khaskovo, Lovech, Montana, Plovdiv, Ruse, Sofiya, Varna

Dependent areas

Independence: 22 September 1908 (from Ottoman Empire)

National holiday: Independence Day 3 March (1878)

Constitution: Adopted 12 July 1991

Legal system: Based on civil law system, with Soviet law influence; has accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal and compulsory

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Zhelyu Mitev ZHELEV (since 1 August 1990); Vice President (vacant); election last held January 1992; results_Zhelyu ZHELEV was elected by popular vote
Head of government: Chairman of the Council of Ministers (Prime Minister) Zhan VIDENOV (since 25 January 1995); Deputy Prime Ministers Doncho KONAKCHIEV, Kiril TSOCHEV, Rumen GECHEV, Svetoslav SHIVAROV (since 25 January 1995)
Cabinet: Council of Ministers; elected by the National Assembly

Legislative branch: Unicameral National Assembly (Narodno Sobranie):Last held 18 December 1994 (next to be held NA 1997; results_BSP 43.5%, UDF 24.2%, PU 6.5%, MRF 5.4%, BBB 4.7%; seats_(240 total) BSP 125, UDF 69, PU 18, MRF 15, BBB 13

Judicial branch: Supreme Court, Constitutional Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: ACCT, BIS, BSEC, CCC, CE, EBRD, ECE, EU (applicant), FAO, G- 9, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICFTU, ICRM, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Inmarset, Intelsat (nonsignatory user), Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, NACC, NAM (guest), NSG, OSCE, PCA, PFP, UN, UNAVEM III, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNMOT, UPU, WEU (associate partner), WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO (applicant), ZC

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Bulgaria: Three equal horizontal bands of white (top), green, and red; the national emblem formerly on the hoist side of the white stripe has been removed_it contained a rampant lion within a wreath of wheat ears below a red five-pointed star and above a ribbon bearing the dates 681 (first Bulgarian state established) and 1944 (liberation from Nazi control)

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Bulgaria - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: One of the poorest countries of central Europe, Bulgaria has continued the difficult process of moving from its old command economy to a modern, market-oriented economy. GDP rose a moderate 2.4% in 1995; inflation was down sharply; and unemployment fell from an estimated 16% to 12%. Despite this progress, structural reforms necessary to underpin macroeconomic stabilization were not pursued vigorously. Mass privatization of state-owned industry continued to move slowly, although privatization of small-scale industry, particularly in the retail and service sectors, accelerated. The Bulgarian economy will continue to grow in 1996, but economic reforms will remain politically difficult as the population has become weary of the process.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate:
2.4% (1995 est.)
0.2% (1994 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: grain, oilseed, vegetables, fruits, tobacco; livestock

Machine building and metal working
Food processing
Building materials
Ferrous and nonferrous metals

Industrial production growth rate: Growth rate 2% (1995), 4% (1994)

Labor force: 3.1 million
By occupation Industry: 41%
By occupation Agriculture: 18%
By occupation Other: 41% (1992)
Labor force

Unemployment rate:
11.9% (1995 est.)
16% (1994)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $3.8 billion
Expenditures: $4.4 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1994), $17.4 billion, including capital expenditures of $610 million (1993 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: Calendar year

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

total value. $4.2 billion (f.o.b., 1994)
$3.6 billion (f.o.b., 1993)

Commodities: machinery and equipment 12.8%; agriculture and food 21.9%; textiles and apparel 14%; metals and ores 19.7%; chemicals 16.9%; minerals and fuels 9.3%
former CEMA countries 35.7%
OECD 46.6% (EU 33.5%)
Arab countries 5.1%
other 12.6%

Total value:
$4 billion (c.i.f., 1994)
$4.3 billion (c.i.f., 1993)

Commodities: fuels, minerals, and raw materials 30.1%; machinery and equipment 23.6%; textiles and apparel 11.6%; agricultural products 10.8%; metals and ores 6.8%; chemicals 12.3%; other 4.8%
former CEMA countries 40.3%
OECD 48.3% (EU 34.1%)
Arab countries 1.7%
other 9.7%

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external:
$10.4 billion (1995)
$12 billion (1994)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: Leva (Lv) per US$1_70.5 (December 1995), 54.2 (1994), 27.1 (1993), 23.3 (1992), 18.4 (1991), 0.7446 (November 1990; note_floating exchange rate since February 1991

Bulgaria - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 38.1 billion kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 4,342 kWh (1994)

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Bulgaria - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 2,773,293 telephones (1993 est.); 29 telephones/100 persons (1992); extensive but antiquated transmission system of coaxial cable and microwave radio relay; direct dialing to 36 countries; telephone service is available in most villages; almost two-thirds of the lines are residential; 67% of Sofia households have phones (November 1988 est.)
Domestic: extensive but antiquated transmission system of coaxial cable and microwave radio relay; telephone service is available in most villages
International: 1 earth station using Intersputnik; INTELSAT link used through a Greek earth station

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Bulgaria - Military 1996
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Military expenditures

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Bulgaria - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

With paved runways over 3047 m: 1
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 17
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 10
With paved runways under 914 m: 88
With unpaved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 2
With unpaved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 1
With unpaved runways 914 to 1523 m: 10
With unpaved runways under 914 m: 226 (1994 est.)

Airports with paved runways
Over 3047 m: 1
2438 to 3047 m: 17
15-24 to 2437 m: 10
Under 914 m: 88

Airports with unpaved runways
2438 to 3047 m: 2
15-24 to 2437 m: 1
914 to 1523 m: 10
Under 914 m: 226 (1994 est.)


Pipelines: Crude oil 193 km; petroleum products 525 km; natural gas 1,400 km (1992)



Waterways: 470 km (1987)

Merchant marine
Total: 355
Ships by type: bulk 45, cargo 27, chemical tanker 4, container 2, oil tanker 13, passenger-cargo 1, railcar carrier 2, roll-on/roll-off cargo 6, short-sea passenger 2, refrigerated cargo 1
Note: Bulgaria owns an additional 7 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 135,016 DWT operating under the registries of Liberia and Malta (1995 est.) Airports:

Ports and terminals

Bulgaria - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: Transshipment point for southwest Asian heroin and South American cocaine transiting the Balkan route; limited producer of precursor chemicals


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