Bulgaria since 1989

Constitution and Administration . In 1989 the multiparty system was introduced. The opposition Union of Democratic Forces (UDF) was formed. In 1990, the BCP (Bulgarian Communist Party) renamed itself BSP (Bulgtarian Socialist Party). A new constitution was adopted in 1991.
General elections (National Assembly) were held in 1990, 1991, 1995, 1997, 2001 and 2005. Presidential elections were held in 1991, 1996, 2001 and 2006.
The office of PM was held by Philip Dimitrov (UDF) 1991-1992, Lyuben Berov (non-party) 1992-1994, Reneta Indzhova (non-party) 1994-1995, Zhan Videnov (BSP) 1995-1997, Stefan Sofiyansky (UDF) 1997, Ivan Kostov (UDF) 1997-2001, Simeon Sakskoburggotski (MfS) 2001-2005, Sergey Stanishev (BSP) 2005- .

Foreign Policy . With the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, the COMECON and Warsaw Pact became obsolete. Bulgaria joined NATO in 2004, and the EU in 2007.

The Economy . The transition from a state-owned, centrally planned economy to a free market economy was painful. When the Bulgarian Lev, the exchange rates into other currencies hitherto was fixed by the state, was allowed to float, the currency fell in value and high inflation set in.
In 1993 Bulgaria launched a privatization programme. Inflation reached a climax in 1994, and again in 1996, when the lev was devalued by 68 %. By 2003, inflation had reduced to 2.3 % (StYB 2006 p.330). Bulgaria's unemployment rate was 18 % in 2000, and fell to an estimated 12.1 % in 2005.
In 1997 the Bulgarian currency was pegged to the German Mark. The introduction of the Euro is planned for 2010.

Social History . In 1989, Bulgaria had 8.99 million inhabitants; the census of 2001 counted 7.93 million.

Ethnic and Religious Minorities . The policy of enforced Bulgarization of the nation's Turkish minority (since 1984) was terminated in 1990; by then, c. 300,000 Bulgarian Turks had emigrated.
According to the census of 2001, 746,664 Turks and 370,908 Roma (Gypsies) lived in Bulgaria (StYB 2006 p.329). In 2002 there were 966,978 Muslims; the number includes the country's Turks and Bulgarian Muslims (Pomaks). (StYB 2006 p.333)

Cultural History . Bulgarian athletes participated in the Summer Olympics of Barcelona 1992, Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000 and Athens 2004.

Articles Elections in Bulgaria, Politics in Bulgaria, List of Prime Ministers of Bulgaria, Economy of Bulgaria, Bulgaria at the 1992 Summer Olympics, Bulgaria at the 1996 Summer Olympics, Bulgaria at the 2000 Summer Olympics, Bulgaria at the 2004 Summer Olympics, Pomaks, Turks in Bulgaria, Roma in Bulgaria, from Wikipedia
Library of Congress, Country Studies : Bulgaria
Political Resources on the Net : Bulgaria; For the Record 2000 : Bulgaria, from UN Human Rights System; Country Report 2003 : Bulgaria, from Polity IV
Timeline, from BBC News
DOCUMENTS Table of Bulgaria's Prime Ministers, 1879-present, from Bulgaria Online
World Statesmen : Bulgaria, from Ben Cahoon
Historical Population Statistics : Bulgaria, from Population Statistics, Univ. Utrecht
Bulgarian banknotes, from Ron Wise's World Paper Money and from Currency Museum
REFERENCE R.J. Crampton, A Concise History of Bulgaria, Cambridge Concise Histories 1997 pp.200-215, KMLA Lib.Sign. 949.7 C889a
Article : Bulgaria, pp.623-636, in : Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th edition, Macropaedia vol.14, KMLA Lib.Sign. R 032 B862n v.14
Raymond Detrez, Historical Dictionary of Bulgaria, Lanham Md. : Scarecrow 2006, KMLA Lib.Sign. R 949.9003 D 483h
Article Bulgaria, in : Britannica Book of the Year 1990 pp.481-482, 579, 1991 pp.468-469, 563, 1992 pp.420-421, 563, 1993 pp. 429, 573, 1994 pp. 428, 573, 1995 pp. 384, 573, 1996 pp.382, 573, 1997 pp.401-402, 571, 2002 pp.399, 568 [G]
Article : Bulgaria, in : Statesman's Yearbook 1990-1991 pp.243-249, 1991-1992 pp.243-249, 1992-1993 pp.243-249, 1993-1994 pp.243-249, 1994-1995 pp.237-243, 1995-1996 pp.229-235, 1996-1997 pp.245-251, 1997-1998 pp.250-256, 1998-1999 pp.278-285, 2000 pp.333-340, 2001 pp.322-328, 2002 pp.337-344, 2003 pp.335-341, 2004 pp.336-342, 2005 pp.331-337, 2006 pp.328-334 [G]
Entry : Background Notes - Bulgaria pp.61-66; Travel Warning - Bulgaria, pp.437-439, in : Countries of the World and their Leaders Yearbook, 2000, Supplement [G]
Entry : Republic of Bulgaria, Cabinet pp.17-18, Background Notes : Bulgaria, pp.347-350, in : Countries of the World and their Leaders Yearbook, 2003 [G]
Entry : Bulgaria, pp.306-311 in : IMF, International Financial Statistics Yearbook 2001 [G]
Article : Bulgaria, in : Americana Annual 1992 pp.162-163, 1993 pp.156-157, 1994 pp.156-157, 1998 p.158 (on events of 1991) [G]

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on October 8th 2006, last revised on June 22nd 2007

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