Papers of BAS. Humanities and Social Sciences

Vol. 5, 2018, No. 2

Macroeconomic development and emigration:

A comparative analysis of Bulgaria and the EU

Dimitar Zlatinov

Abstract. The paper examines the macroeconomic developments since 2007 in Bulgaria and Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain, Italy and Greece which are the main destinations for Bulgarian emigrants. We aim at tracking macroeconomic changes across different phases of the economic cycle that affect migration processes. We also focus on the differences and economic relations between Bulgaria and the developed European countries that matter in emigration. The main conclusions are: 1) after joining the EU Bulgarian emigration has been increasing while the cyclical fluctuations in Europe have changed the most preferable emigration destinations; 2) low level of incomes in Bulgaria have continued to be a major factor motivating emigration; 3) Bulgarian emigrants will continue to target core EU countries as the expected pace of Bulgarian economic development does not give rise to a permanent reversal of emigration.

Keywords: emigration, macroeconomic development, real convergence, income disparities, EU Single Market