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The ESF in Bulgaria

Bulgaria is investing ESF funding in improving its people’s skills and prospects through better education and training. The ESF is also strengthening the capacity of public administrations to offer better services to citizens, workers and job-seekers. Protecting vulnerable social groups, such as the Roma, and helping them integrate better into work and society is a high priority, too.

Building a skilled and inclusive workforce

Raising the performance of the education system and providing people with training and lifelong learning opportunities are key priorities for Bulgaria. ESF spending is boosting the skills and qualifications of today’s workforce and of the young people who will enter the jobs market in the coming years. An example of the wide scope of these activities is the nationwide initiative which offers training vouchers to employees to improve their skills at education institutions of their choice – over 140 000 participants so far. Similar schemes are helping job-seekers get the skills that employers need.

Bulgaria is also building a more inclusive society and workforce – with more opportunities for all. For example, ESF projects are helping the country’s many orphans and disabled children to take part in work and society like everyone else. Other projects are supporting Roma communities, helping them to overcome discrimination, to participate fully in education and to go on to get jobs.

Supportive public services

Bulgaria is significantly upgrading the quality and efficiency of the public bodies that offer services to its citizens. Fair and open access to employment services are vital to ensure that job-seekers and businesses can find jobs and fill positions. And these activities extend to public administrations concerned with improving social inclusion, such as the judicial and education systems.

As well as better training for civil servants and new computer-based management systems, Bulgaria is also taking advantage of expertise from elsewhere in Europe. For example, a new system for recognising international student qualifications – which enhances worker mobility – is based on similar systems in the Netherlands and Germany. Other new e-government services are giving people access to online job searches and training opportunities.

ESF contacts in Bulgaria

The ESF in Bulgaria: data and figures



Who is funded

See the list of beneficiaries

Who participates

791,147 people