What makes Bulgaria attractive?
POLITICAL AND BUSINESS STABILITY
Bulgaria enjoys one of the most stable political and economic environments in Southeastern Europe. Government financial indicators are remarkable not only in the region, but on a pan-European scale. Bulgarian economy maintains its excellent performance despite global challenges. Bulgaria is the only country in Europe with a credit rating upgrade by Moody’s since the beginning of 2010. Bulgaria is a member of some of the most prestigious political organizations - European Union member since 2007, NATO member since 2004, WTO member since 1996. Bulgaria has a stable currency - Bulgarian Lev has been pegged to the Euro since the adoption of the currency in 2002.
EU MOST FAVOURABLE TAXES
Bulgaria possibly is one of the most favourable locations in the EU in terms of doing business. Why? First of all, Currently, Bulgaria has a 0% tax rate for regions with high unemployment. Second, in Bulgaria VAT rate is 20%, dividend taxation rate is 5% and last Bulgaria has signed over 50 double tax treaties.
HIGHLY QUALIFIED AND TALENTED WORKFORCE
Bulgaria has 60 500 graduates from 53 universities and colleges, 10 200 foreign students enrolled in Bulgarian universities. About 70% of Bulgarian students study English as a first foreign language, as a second and third preferred foreign languages are German and French.
COMPETITIVE COST OF DOING BUSINESS
Bulgarian economic environment provides one of the most competitive costs of labour in Central and Eastern Europe. Bulgaria has top - quality office space at Europe’s most competitive rental cost level and cost of electricity is 67% of the European average.
EXCELLENT BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT
The required capital for the registration of a limited liability company in Bulgaria is 1 euro. There is a unified register of companies “The Trade Register” and the registration takes 3-7 days. The country ranks 8th among 183 countries across the world in terms of ease of obtaining credit. Bulgaria is among the top 10 countries in Eastern Europe and Central Asia that best protects its investors.
GOVERNMENT SUPPORT AND EU FUNDING
The government supports specific industries under the Investment promotion act (IPA) and investments must be related to the following sectors: Manufacturing, Research and development, Education, Healthcare, High-tech services, Warehousing and logistics and etc. Benefits for certified investors include: shortened administrative procedures, preferential acquisition of state or municipal land, financial support for professional training/education, infrastructure subsidies and individual administrative services. Biggest investors are supported through a priority investment scheme.
HIGH GROWTH POTENTIAL
Consistent GDP growth of above 5% prior to the financial crisis. Convergence potential in many sectors vs. Western and CEE levels. Increasing export levels, especially in sectors such as agriculture, food, chemicals, electronics. Preferred location for IT and BPO from both European and international players.
STRATEGIC GEOGRAPHIC LOCATION
Bulgaria is strategically located to serve Europe, Russia, the CIS countries, the Middle East and North Africa. The country is only 3 hours flight from all major destinations in Europe, Russia and the Mediterranean region. Through the country pass five Pan-European corridors linking Northern Europe to Middle East and Northern Africa. Direct access to fastest growing and biggest market in Europe - 150 mn in Southeast Europe. Additionally, Bulgaria is a party of 68 bilateral treaties for avoidance of double taxation.
TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AND MODERN CONNECTIVITY
The country has very comprehensive infrastructure that is being improved constantly. For example, 6 motorways (some under construction), 230 railway stations with capability of loading/unloading cargo, 5 international airports (Sofia, Plovdiv, Varna, Burgas, Gorna Oryahovitsa (Veliko Tarnovo province), 7 major river ports on the Danube ( Vidin, Lom, Kozloduy, Oryahovo, Nikopol, Belene, Svishtov, Ruse) , 6 major seaports on the Black Sea ( Varna, Burgas, Kavarna, etc. ), Over 60 industrial zones and logistics centers. Bulgaria has one of the fastest household download speeds worldwide and Sofia is among the top ten worldwide leaders in broadband quality, according to Cisco.