Bulgaria Needs a Reform-Oriented Government to Take Full Advantage of its EU Membership

bulgaria emerging europe

Bulgaria is still the poorest EU member state, although its GDP is now around 50 per cent of the Bloc’s average, while it was only 25 per cent back in 2000. The country has a rather dynamic and often turbulent political life, but its democracy is more pluralistic and less polarised than Hungary and Poland. In a rather competitive environment, one party – the centre-right GERB — and its leader Boyko Borissov have dominated the political scene over the last ten years. They emerged as the biggest party faction in the National Assembly after the latest parliamentary elections in March. On May 4, the third Borissov government was sworn in. Continue reading Bulgaria Needs a Reform-Oriented Government to Take Full Advantage of its EU Membership

Cautious Upturn in Emerging Europe Haunted by the Spectre of Uncertainty

Donald Trump

For the economies of emerging Europe, the international economic environment appears generally positive. In 2017-2018, GDP growth in the Euro area is expected to hover at around 1.7 per cent. The international financial markets have stabilised and the current economic mood is improving. Because of the global recovery, the US Fed is expected to increase interest rates further in 2017, while oil prices are likely to rise. In the EU, disbursements from the payments’ cycle of the European Structural and Investment Funds are only just beginning, indicating higher co-financed investments in the Central and Eastern European EU member states (EU-CEE) from this year onwards.

Continue reading Cautious Upturn in Emerging Europe Haunted by the Spectre of Uncertainty

The Competitive Edge in Central and Eastern Europe

SOFIA BULGARIA - MAY 5: View of the Ivan Vazov National Theatre in Sofia on May 5 2016. Sofia is the largest city and capital of Bulgaria.

Joining the EU has unlocked robust GDP growth and continues to aggregate positive energy in the Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries. Adhering to the common market has brought a surge in trade, positive institutional changes and improvements in the business environment. However for many countries, it has also led to a migration of the labour force, which could affect long-term economic growth prospects. Continue reading The Competitive Edge in Central and Eastern Europe

The CEE Region Is Making Advances in Prioritising Waste-to-Energy Projects

The European Commission has been preparing a technical communication that focusses on waste-to-energy (WtE). It aims to explore the opportunities this offers, particularly with regard to the synergies between resource and energy efficiency. The communication was scheduled to be published at the end of 2016 together with the reviewed Renewable Energy Directive. Continue reading The CEE Region Is Making Advances in Prioritising Waste-to-Energy Projects

Larisa Manastirli: Where is Bulgaria After Ten Years in the EU?

In November 2016, Bulgarian opposition Socialist, Rumen Radev, won the presidential election, defeating the centre-right speaker of parliament, Tsetska Tsacheva, an ally of Prime Minister, Boyko Borissov. The PM had pledged to step down if his candidate lost, and he did thus triggering an early election.

Larisa Manastirli, Director for Bulgaria at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), which is a leading investor in the Bulgarian economy, spoke to Andrew Wrobel, about the reforms the country has introduced and the improvements that are still required, ten years after Bulgaria joined the European Union. Continue reading Larisa Manastirli: Where is Bulgaria After Ten Years in the EU?

Are Labour Shortages Driving Economic Growth?

The global economic environment continues to be challenging. The ‘wounds’ inflicted by the global financial crisis of 2008 have not yet healed completely and world economic growth remains rather subdued. This particularly applies to the advanced countries and especially to the Euro Zone, which is the most important trading partner for the Eastern European countries.  Continue reading Are Labour Shortages Driving Economic Growth?

Jeffrey Puritt: In Outsourcing, Understanding Is About More Than Speaking the Same Language

Outsourcing is being transformed; new outsourcing destinations, digitalisation, automation and the Internet of Things are only a few of the elements that are shaping it now.

Jeffrey Puritt, president and CEO of TELUS International, which operates delivery centres in eight countries, including Romania and Bulgaria, spoke to Andrew Wrobel about how his company selected the two emerging European countries, as well as about the newest trends in the sector and global outsourcing standards, during the Brexit and Global Expansion Summit in London. Continue reading Jeffrey Puritt: In Outsourcing, Understanding Is About More Than Speaking the Same Language

ScaleFocus — Thinking Big Means Big Growth

The Fastest-Growing Company of the Year in Europe and the Outsourcing Service Provider of the Year (by the International Business Awards and the National Outsourcing Association in the UK respectively) are just two of the numerous recognitions that this young Bulgarian company received in 2015. ScaleFocus is a fast growing IT consultancy and software development supplier that delivers product outsourcing and custom solutions. In March 2016, the company celebrated its fourth birthday.

Plamen Tsekov, CEO of ScaleFocus, talked to Andrew Wrobel about the company’s recent successes, as well as its very beginnings and their plans for the next decade. Continue reading ScaleFocus — Thinking Big Means Big Growth