The republic of Bulgaria is a country located in the Central Southern part of the European continent. It ranks as the fifteenth largest in the continent with a surface territory of 110,994 square kilometer. Bulgaria shares a border with Greece and Turkey to the south, Serbia and Macedonia to the west, the Black Sea to the east and Romania to the north. Its capital city, Sofia, lies in the western area of the country. Bulgaria’s ethnic groups consist of Bulgarian, Roma, Turkish, and several others. Bulgarian is the official language. The terrain is wide-ranging, containing huge mountainous areas, plains, fertile valleys and a coastline next to the Black Sea. The country experiences climates of snowy winters and continental–mild summers and cold.
Bulgaria has a population of approximately 7.4 million people who are mainly concentrated in the administrative centers of the country’s twenty eight provinces, and are predominantly urban. Sofia is not only the capital city but it’s the largest as well. It has a population of about 1.2 million people and it is where most political and economical activities are concentrated. The economy depends heavily on local natural assets with the strongest areas being agriculture and heavy industry. Bulgaria is home to a number of the most ancient cultural artifacts in the planet and is a chronological crossroad of diverse civilizations.
Bulgaria has a parliamentary type of government where the prime minister has the highest most powerful executive position. The parliament has 209 elected members and 240 deputies who make up the national assembly. Parliament has the power to select and dismiss state ministers, including the prime minister, sanctions operation of troops abroad and exercises power over the government. It is in charge for the enactment of laws, setting up of presidential elections, declaration of war, approval of the state budget and approval of international agreements and treaties. The president of the country is directly voted for a 5-year term and has the right to one re-election. He or she serves as the head of government and commander in chief of the armed forces. The president is also the head of the Consultative Council for National Security and, whilst not capable of initiating legislation, can return a bill back to parliament for more debate. Parliament can turn over the president’s proscription with a simple majority vote.
The market in Bulgaria is free and industrialized. The private sector accounts for over 80 percent of the Gross Domestic Product. From a mainly agricultural nation with 80 percent of its inhabitants in rural areas in the year 1948, by the 1980s Bulgaria had transformed into a developed economy with technological and scientific research as its top priorities. Even though the country has continued to enjoy rapid growth of economic development in the twenty first century, it remains the country with the lowest income level in Europe with an average wage of 354 Euros per month. Major industries include the production of chemicals, extraction of and minerals metals, petroleum refinement, machinery, steel and production of vehicle components.