In the first quarter of 2016, well over 15 000 Greeks have registered companies in Bulgaria. On average, Greeks open 12 new business accounts at Bulgarian banks every day, according to the Greek Embassy in Sofia.
This is happening in spite of warnings from the Greek government. The Ministry of Finance in Athens has warned tax evaders of strict penalties, in case audits reveal inaccuracies. Still, many Greek companies have moved to Bulgaria, in order to avoid a “tax avalanche”, media reports say.
In 2015, a total of 13,500 Greek companies were registered in Bulgaria, according to the embassy. This is a sharp increase.
In Greece, taxes on corporate profits amount to 29 percent, compared to a low 10 percent in Bulgaria.
Since the Greek debt crisis started in 2009, taxes in that country have increased substantially. Those moves have been criticized as counterproductive to the country’s efforts to return to economical growth.