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Friday, 4th September 2015

The Economic and Social Situation in Bulgaria

Source: European Economic and Social Committee

From the Introduction:

This study provides an overview of developments since the onset of the crisis, showing the current socio-economic situation in Bulgaria. Particular attention will be paid to the macroeconomic development parameters, the nature of the labour market, living and working conditions, industrial relations and social dialogue. The statistics used show the dynamics of socio-economic development and where Bulgaria stands within the EU based on comparative international analysis.

The country's transformation from a planned to a market economy experienced a slow-down as a result of the unstable political situation in the first years of transition and a lack of political will for large-scale and unpopular reforms. To this should be added the fall-out of the economic and financial crisis of 1996-1997, resulting in hyperinflation, an unprecedented currency depreciation and ultimately the introduction of the currency board arrangement. Belated privatisation was accompanied by deals shrouded in scandal, closure of systemically important companies, bankruptcies and mass lay-offs.

A new form of industrial relations started from zero and had to find its feet in difficult socio-economic circumstances. The absence of a social dialogue tradition and insufficiently formed social partnership institutions meant progress was initially weak, with improvised reactions to events and the partners themselves having to learn as they went along. The invitation to join the EU brought a new direction in Bulgaria's socio-economic development, with full membership in 2007 giving impetus to reforms, the restructuring of the economy and opportunities to raise the nation's standard of living.

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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

More articles by Adrian Janes »



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