Bulgaria faces huge demographic challenges, but optimists point to recent migration trends as cause for at least cautious optimism


“Google “Bulgaria” and “demography” and you will rapidly learn that journalists and analysts have for years been reporting that the country’s population is one of the fastest shrinking in the world”, writes the Economist correspondent in Balkan Insight –English-language website of the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network.

The author quotes Marin Lessenski, Program Director of the European Policies Program at the Open Society Institute – Sofia that the policy of issuing of Bulgarian passports to Macedonian citizens did not bring about increase in the population of the country.  “They took the passports and went to live in Western Europe instead”, Lessenski explained.

The analysis quotes too Georgi Angelov, Senior Economist of the Open Society Institute – Sofia, who said that in recent years unemployment rates dramatically declined, which led to labor shortages and increase in salaries. This made the country more attractive and respectively the net migration decreased. This is confirmed by the head of the National Statistical Institute, who is also quoted in the Balkan Insight publication.

Full text of the Balkan Insight publication