Reducing regional disparities for inclusive growth in Bulgaria
Regions with large cities are driving growth in Bulgaria, while many rural regions
suffer from depopulation and rapid ageing. Improving living standards across all regions
will require better coverage and access to public services, notably in health and
long-term care. Policy action to integrate the Roma, around one-tenth of the population
most of which live in poverty and socially excluded neighbourhoods, would help to
tackle labour shortages in the medium term in addition to improving well-being. Investments
in infrastructure and housing reform are needed to boost mobility and strengthen linkages
to national and international supply chains. This would also benefit agriculture that
accounts for almost a third of employment in lagging regions and has undergone a rapid
restructuring, polarising and distorting the sector towards low-value added products.
While the coronavirus outbreak has hit the tourism industry hard, the diverse Bulgarian
landscape offers opportunities for developing profitable experience-based tourism,
when international travel resumes.
Published on March 25, 2021
In series:OECD Economics Department Working Papersview more titles