The Bulgarian National Broadband Infrastructure Plan for Next Generation Access since 2014 sets broadband targets in line with those of the Digital Agenda Europe.

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Summary of broadband development in Bulgaria

The provision of Internet and e-services in Bulgaria is relatively good in the most urban areas. Bulgaria holds one of the top positions in Europe for speed of the Internet used in major cities. However, in medium and small cities as well as in remote and less-populated rural places, white areas have no access to the Internet.

Bulgaria’s National Strategy for the Development of Broadband Access was approved in 2009 and updated in 2012. It includes plans for broadband development in the country from 2012 to 2015 with links to 2020. The National Broadband Infrastructure Plan for Next Generation Access was adopted by the Council of Ministers in 2014. A Roadmap for the implementation of the plan was adopted 2016. The documents follow the Digital Agenda for Europe targets and set even more ambitious take-up targets.

National broadband strategy and policy

Responsible authorities

Main aims for broadband development 

Bulgaria's national broadband strategy, National Broadband Infrastructure Plan for Next Generation Access (Council of Ministers Decision № 435/26.06.2014) is valid for 2014-2020. It is accompanied by a roadmap for its implementation, adopted in 2016. The plan sets broadband targets in line with the DAE: 100% coverage with at least 30 Mbps until 2020, and 50% take-up rate for 100 Mbps. Bulgaria is planning an update of the national broadband plan in 2018.

Bulgaria targets an 80% take-up rate (100 Mbps) for businesses by 2020. Apart from its main objective to create the necessary legal framework, Bulgaria has designated the construction of broadband infrastructure in remote and sparsely populated areas as its first priority, as these areas represent a deficit in the use of Internet and all related services. The upgrade and support of optical high speed infrastructures servicing the public administration and respective local authorities is the next planned step. These measures will put in place a stable technical basis for the establishment of a fully functional e-government. This will also create conditions for Bulgarian citizens and businesses to benefit from the opportunities provided by the developing digital services based on broadband infrastructure.

Main measures for broadband development

  • Regulation measures: A specialised law on electronic communications infrastructure aims at increasing the supply of broadband access in Bulgaria by promoting competition, simplifying authorisation procedures, and encouraging investments in infrastructure.
  • Financial measures: Broadband expansion projects in Bulgaria are financed by using mainly structural funds from the EU. Alternative financing instruments include state budget and private investments.
  • Soft measures: Measures for the stimulation of the supply and demand of services carried over broadband networks that aim at increasing the digital competence of the population and encouraging the use of electronic services.

Read the roadmap for implementing the National Broadband Infrastructure Plan for Next Generation Access where the above measures have been listed.

Strategic objectives regarding NGA coverage

Strategic objectives for settlements in black areas (with two or more providers offering 30+Mbps)

  • Development of fixed broadband networks, in order to provide 100% of the access with speeds exceeding 100 Mbps;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds of over 100 Mbps to at least 65% of households;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds of over 100 Mbps for all business organizations;

Strategic objectives for settlements located in grey areas (with at least one provider that offers 30+Mbps)

  • Development of fixed broadband networks, in order to provide 80% of the access with speeds of over 100 Mbps;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds of over 100 Mbps to at least 55% of all households;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds of over 100 Mbps for all business organizations.

Strategic objectives of settlements located in white areas (without any provider, that offers 30+Mbps)

  • Ensuring next generation broadband access with full coverage in the area;
  • Development of fixed broadband networks, in order to provide 60% of the access with speeds exceeding 100 Mbps;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds of over 100 Mbps for at least 34% of all households;
  • Enabling optical connectivity and broadband access with speeds exceeding 100 Mbps for all business organizations.

Source: Bulgaria's National Broadband Infrastructure Plan for Next Generation Access

National and regional broadband financial instruments

Data on broadband development and technologies in Bulgaria

For the latest data on broadband coverage, subscriptions and penetrations, coverage of different broadband technologies and costs, check the scoreboard reports and the country reports of the Digital Economy & Society Index (DESI).

Spectrum assignments for wireless broadband

Check the overview for details on harmonised spectrum assignments and consult the study on spectrum assignments in the EU.

Publications and press documents

English

Bulgarian

Contact information

BCO Bulgaria (national Broadband Competence Office): Information Technology Directorate, Ministry of Transport, Information Technology and Communications (Министерство на транспорта, информационните технологии и съобщенията)

Address: 9 Dyakon Ignatiy Str., 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria
Contact via email
Phone: +359 2 9409 277
Website

Communications Regulation Commission (Комисия за регулиране на съобщенията)

Address: 6, Gurko str., Sofia 1000, Bulgaria
Contact via email
Phone: +35 92 949 27 23
Website

Country information - Bulgaria