Skip to main content
European Commission logo


EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Political, social and economic background and trends


1.Political, social and economic background and trends

Last update: 29 March 2024

The Republic of Bulgaria is a country located in Southeast Europe, in the Balkan Peninsula. Its east boundary is the Black Sea and the north one is the Danube River.  Its neighbour countries to the south are Greece and Turkey, to the west are Serbia and North Macedonia, and Romania is to the north. Bulgarian territory is 110,994 km2 and Sofia is the capital and the largest city followed by other major cities Burgas, Plovdiv, and Varna. 

Bulgaria is a unitary state with local self-government and its territorial integrity is sacrosanct. It is organised into 27 territorial management units (provinces) and a metropolitan capital province (Sofia-Grad) which are subdivided into 265 municipalities.

Bulgaria is a republic with a parliamentary government. According to the Constitution of the country, all state power originates from the people and is exercised directly by them, but also through state bodies. All people are born free and equal in dignity and rights and all citizens are equal under the law.

Science, education and culture are national assets and the state creates conditions for their free development and supports them. It ensures the preservation of the national historical and cultural heritage.

Under the Constitution, everyone has the right to education. School education up to the age of 16 is compulsory. Primary and secondary education in State and municipal schools is free. The public higher education institutions have academic autonomy and under certain conditions laid down by law, education is free of charge.

The State promotes education by establishing and financing schools, supporting talented pupils and students, and creating conditions for vocational training and requalification. It exercises control over all types and levels of schools.

The official language is Bulgarian. The traditional religion in the Republic of Bulgaria is Eastern Orthodox.