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Sofia and Bulgaria in the Rankings

 

Bulgaria ranks 46th among 161 countries across the world in the Forbes Best Countries for Business 2018 list. In the Bulgarian profile, it is indicated that the strong internal demand and the low international price of the energy sources are amongst the reasons for the good economic growth of Bulgaria. The proper investment regime and low corporate taxes are also mentioned. Amongst the factors hindering the investment climate are the slow public administration, the weak judiciary, the low productivity, the lack of transparency in public procurement and the presence of organised crime. Bulgaria is better ranked than Croatia, Turkey and Serbia that are behind the 50th position but is worse ranked than Romania and Greece that are sitting respectively at 41st and 42nd places. The ranking of the best countries for business is topped by Great Britain, followed by Sweden, Hongkong, The Netherlands and New Zealand.

 

Bulgaria is ranked 41st among the most innovative economies in the world according to the Bloomberg Innovation Index 2019. Bulgaria keeps its position from last year – the entire grade is slightly increased (up to 56,36 points) and the country is still in the Top 50. Bulgaria is best performing in the productivity (49 points) and the patent activity (48 points) but its worst performance is in the category of the productivity added value (32 points).

South Korea retains the global crown (87,38 points), but the development of Germany makes the largest European economy almost equal to the Asian country according to the data of the Bloomberg Innovation Index of 2019.

 

Bulgaria ranks 54th out of 125 countries in the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2019 (GTCI) of Adecco Group – the annual benchmarking report that measures the ability of countries to compete for talent.

The index ranks the countries according to six major indicators: technical skills, global knowledge skills, ability to attract talents from other countries, ability to develop talented specialists, standard of living and workforce qualification level.

At European level, our country ranks 30th, compared to 27th last year. Among the countries in the region – Greece ranks 44th, Romania is 69th, and Turkey – 74th.

The top ten of the best countries for creating and attracting staff are Switzerland, Singapore, the United States, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and Luxembourg.

In the same index but in the city ranking, Sofia occupies the 78th position from 114 cities. The top places are taken by Washington, Copenhagen, Oslo, Vienna and Zurich. Among the cities from the region, Athens is positioned 48th, Bucharest – 60th, Belgrade – 99th and Istanbul – 67th.

 

Bulgaria has the second highest share of winning municipalities in WiFi4EUthe EU initiative that provides municipalities with the opportunity to apply for vouchers to install Wi-Fi connectivity in public spaces, the Ministry of Transport, Information Technology and Communications announced in February.

At the end of 2018, 215 Bulgarian municipalities applied for the initiative and 113 of them (43%) were approved for funding. The total value of the high-speed access vouchers amounts to BGN 1 695 000. The first place in the competition is taken by Ireland, where 105 municipalities have submitted applications and 59 have received funding.

The full list of the municipalities can be found here.

 

Bulgaria ranks 11th out of 153 countries in Good Country Index released for a fourth consecutive year by the team of the independent British political consultant Simon Anholt.

The ranking lilsts the countries according to their world contribution in eight different categories – Science and Technology, Culture, International Peace and Security, World Order, Planet and Climate, Global Prosperity and Equality, Global Health and Wellbeing. Our country performs best in the categories “Science and Technology” and “Planet and Climate” where it is ranked 11th as well as in the “International Peace and Security” where it is ranked 15th and 11th. The lowest score is in the “Global Prosperity and Equality” – 49th.

Data from 35 global organisations (as the UN and World Bank) are used for the index. Based on them, the contribution of each country to the common prosperity and wellbeing of humanity is determined. For the final value, indicators such as GDP, population etc. are taken into consideration.

The Top 10 of this year’s ranking are Finland, Ireland, Sweden, Germany and Denmark, Switzerland, Norway, France, Spain and Canada. In the Top 20, there are a total of 17 European countries. The other three are Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.

 

Bulgaria is in the TOP 5 of the countries with the greatest participation of women in science and technology. Data was published by Eurostat on the occasion of the International Women’s and Girls’ Day of Science, celebrated on 11 February. The majority of the scientists and engineers are women in five of the countries in the EU: Lithuania (57%), Bulgaria and Latvia (53%), Portugal (51%) and Denmark (a little bit above 50%).

 

Sofia is listed together with Paris, Munich and Camborne (UK) as a thriving start-up location in the report “Well established. How Start-ups succeed”, part of the documentary series “Plan B” of the German national television ZDF. TV broadcasting is about innovations, alternative solutions, good practices and entrepreneurship. Sofia is demonstrated as a good example of conditions that are lacking in the entrepreneurship environment in Germany.

In the report, Janis Schmidt and Lasse Krüger are interviewed. They moved the implementation of their new project from Germany to Sofia. The team develops an algorithm, that imports the scanned information from a business card in the email contact list and after that sends an automated email.

Among the advantages of Sofia as a business destination are listed the lower taxes, ease of establishing a new company, the access to skilled developers and more accessible labour costs than in Germany, the good Internet connectivity that is really important for the entrepreneurs in the technologies. Also mentioned are the good food, the close location to the mountain and the places for rest.

 

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