Discusses key economic indicators and trade statistics, which countries are dominant in the market, the U.S. market share, the political situation if relevant, the top reasons why U.S. companies should consider exporting to this country, and other issues that affect trade, e.g., terrorism, currency devaluations, trade agreements.
Last Published: 9/12/2019

After the fall of the Berlin wall 30 years ago, Bulgaria underwent significant transformation. It changed from a centralized, planned economy to an open, market-based, middle-income economy anchored in the European Union and NATO.  The advancement of structural reforms starting in the late 1990s and the introduction of the currency board spurred improved living standards.

As one of the EU’s newest members, Bulgaria is an emerging market providing opportunities for U.S. companies. Bulgaria’s strong macroeconomic health makes it attractive to new companies.  Although not part of the Eurozone, the Bulgarian lev is pegged to the euro. Bulgaria also has one of the lowest debt burdens and budget deficits in the EU, with an inflation rate near 2.4%, making it one of the most stable countries in the region for business.

Bulgaria’s low corporate and personal income tax rate of 10% is one of several competitive advantages this market offers.  Bulgaria’s strategic location in the center of Southeastern Europe and at the crossroads to the Middle East offers a potential launch-pad for expansion into neighboring markets. Bulgaria’s highly educated workforce has the lowest minimum wage in the EU.  English is widely spoken.

Real GDP growth strengthened from 3.1% in 2018 to 3.5% (year-on-year) in the first quarter of 2019. The recovery in exports that began in the second half of 2018 contributed strongly to economic expansion. EU analysts expect that real GDP growth will reach 3.3% in 2019 and 3.4% in 2020

This report will highlight the leading sectors for U.S. companies, including agriculture, agricultural equipment, energy, environmental technologies, healthcare, IT, tourism, and safety & security.

Prepared by our U.S. Embassies abroad. With its network of 108 offices across the United States and in more than 75 countries, the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce utilizes its global presence and international marketing expertise to help U.S. companies sell their products and services worldwide. Locate the U.S. Commercial Service trade specialist in the U.S. nearest you by visiting http://export.gov/usoffices.