More than 210 000 of Bulgaria’s unemployed have given up looking for work – official

Unemployment in Bulgaria in the fourth quarter of 2012 was 12.4 per cent, representing an increase of 8.6 per cent more unemployed people than in Q4 2011, according to figures released on February 14 2013 by the National Statistical Institute (NSI).

A total of 417 300 people were unemployed in Q4 2012 in Bulgaria, a country of about 7.3 million according to 2011 census figures. Of the jobless, 237 800 were men and 197 500 women.

The number of long-term unemployed, meaning people who had been out of work for more than a year, was 230 100, making up 55.1 per cent of all unemployed. Compared to Q4 2011, this was a 7.5 per cent increase.

According to the statistical institute, of those unemployed in Q4 2012, 83.3 per cent had previous work experience and 16.7 per cent were looking for their first job.

Among people aged 15 to 29, unemployment was 20.7 per cent – 21.3 per cent for men and 20 per cent for women. Overall, the unemployment figure for this age group was 0.7 percentage points higher than in Q4 2011.

The “discouraged persons” – in NSI parlance, those who would like to have a job but have given up trying to get one – in the 15 to 64 age bracket were 210 200 people.

In all, more than 400 000 Bulgarians have lost their jobs since the advent of the global financial crisis in 2008.

According to the NSI, in Q4 2012, 2 951 800 people had jobs, the equivalent of 47 per cent of the population.

Of those with jobs, 3.6 per cent were employers, 88.1 per cent employees, 7.4 per cent were self-employed and 0.8 per cent were “unpaid family workers”.

Just more than 72 per cent were employed in the private sector and 27.8 per cent in the public sector.

(Photo: Darren Shaw/




The Sofia Globe staff

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