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The People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
(PRB; Bulgarian: Народна Република България (НРБ) Narodna Republika Bǎlgariya (NRB)) was the official name of Bulgaria, when it was a socialist republic. The People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
existed from 1946 to 1990 and it was ruled by the Bulgarian Communist Party
Bulgarian Communist Party
(BCP), which in turn ruled together with its coalition partner, the Bulgarian Agrarian National Union. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was part of Comecon
Comecon
and a member of the Warsaw Pact and was closely allied with the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
during the Cold War. The Bulgarian resistance movement during World War II
Bulgarian resistance movement during World War II
deposed the Kingdom of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
administration in the Bulgarian coup d'état of 1944 which ended the country's alliance with the Axis powers and led to the People's Republic
Republic
in 1946. The BCP modelled its policies after those of the Soviet Union, transforming the country over the course of a decade from an agrarian peasant society into an industrialized socialist society. In the mid-1950s and after the death of Stalin, conservative hardliners lost influence and a period of social liberalization and stability followed under Todor Zhivkov. Varying degrees of conservative or liberal influence followed. After a new energy and transportation infrastructure was constructed, by 1960 manufacturing became the dominant sector of the economy and Bulgaria
Bulgaria
became a major exporter of household goods and later on computer technologies, earning it the nickname of " Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley
of the Eastern Bloc". The country's relatively high productivity levels and high scores on social development rankings made it a model for other socialist countries' administrative policies. In 1989, after a few years of liberal influence, political reforms were initiated and Todor Zhivkov, who had served as head of the party since 1954, was removed from office in a BCP congress. In 1990, under the leadership of Georgi Parvanov, the BCP changed its name to the Bulgarian Socialist Party
Bulgarian Socialist Party
(BSP) and adopted a centre-left political ideology in place of Marxism–Leninism. Following the BSP victory in the 1990 election, which was the first openly contested multi-party election since 1931, the name of the state was changed to the Republic of Bulgaria. Geographically, the People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
had the same borders as present-day Bulgaria
Bulgaria
and it bordered the Black Sea
Black Sea
to the east; Romania to the north; Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia
(via Serbia and Macedonia) to the west and Greece
Greece
and Turkey
Turkey
to the south.

Contents

1 History

1.1 Communist coup 1.2 Early years and Chervenkov era 1.3 Forced Macedonization in Pirin
Pirin
Macedonia 1.4 Zhivkov era 1.5 Debt crisis 1.6 16th republic of the Soviet Union 1.7 Prague Spring 1.8 1971–1989 1.9 End of the People's Republic

2 Government and politics 3 Military 4 Economy

4.1 Automotive industry

5 Culture 6 References

6.1 Works cited

7 External links

History[edit] Main article: Bulgaria
Bulgaria
in World War II On 1 March 1941, the Kingdom of Bulgaria
Kingdom of Bulgaria
signed the Tripartite Pact, and officially became a member of the Axis Powers. As a result of the German invasion of Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia
and Greece
Greece
in April, Bulgaria
Bulgaria
came to occupy large parts of these countries. In 1942, the Fatherland Front was formed from a mixture of Communists, Socialists
Socialists
and Liberals.

Communist coup[edit] In 1944, with the entry of the Red Army
Red Army
in Romania, the Kingdom of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
changed its alliance and declared neutrality. On 5 September, the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
declared war on the kingdom and three days later the Red Army
Red Army
entered north-eastern Bulgaria, prompting the government to declare support in order to minimise military conflict. On 9 September, communist partisans launched a coup d'état which de facto ended the rule of the Bulgarian monarchy
Bulgarian monarchy
and its administration, after which a new government assumed power led by the Fatherland Front (FF), which itself was led by the Bulgarian Communist Party.

Early years and Chervenkov era[edit] Georgi Dimitrov, General Secretary of the Bulgarian Communist Party from 1946–1949 After taking power, the FF formed a coalition under the former ruler Kimon Georgiev, including the Social Democrats and the Agrarians. Under the terms of the peace settlement, Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was allowed to keep Southern Dobruja, but formally renounced all claims to Greek and Yugoslav territory. 150,000 Bulgarians
Bulgarians
settled during the occupation were expelled from Western Thrace. The Communists deliberately took a minor role in the new government at first, while the Soviet representatives held the real power. A Communist-controlled People's Militia was set up, which harassed and intimidated non-Communist parties. On 1 February 1945, Regent
Regent
Prince Kiril, former Prime Minister Bogdan Filov, and hundreds of other officials of the kingdom were arrested on charges of war crimes. By June, Kirill and the other Regents, twenty-two former ministers, and many others had been executed. The new government began to arrest Nazi collaborators. Thousands of people were charged with treason or participating in counter-revolutionary conspiracy and sentenced to either death or life in prison.[1][2][3] As the war came to a halt, the government expanded its campaign of political revolution to attack economic elites in banking and private business. This strengthened when it became apparent that the United States
United States
and United Kingdom
United Kingdom
had little interest in Bulgaria. In November 1945, Communist Party leader Georgi Dimitrov
Georgi Dimitrov
returned to Bulgaria
Bulgaria
after 22 years in exile. He made a truculent speech that rejected cooperation with opposition groups. Elections held a few weeks later resulted in a large majority for the Fatherland Front. In September 1946, the monarchy was abolished by plebiscite, which resulted in 95.6 percent voting in favour of a republic, and young Tsar Simeon II was sent into exile. The Communists openly took power, and Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was declared a People's Republic. Vasil Kolarov, the number-three man in the party, became President. Over the next year, the Communists consolidated their hold on power. Elections for a constituent assembly in October 1946 gave the Communists a majority. A month later, Dimitrov became prime minister. The Agrarians refused to co-operate with the authorities, and in June 1947 their leader Nikola Petkov
Nikola Petkov
was arrested, despite strong international protests. This marked the establishment of a Communist establishment in Bulgaria. In December 1947, the constituent assembly ratified a new constitution for the republic, referred to as the "Dimitrov Constitution". The constitution was drafted with the help of Soviet jurists using the 1936 Soviet Constitution
Constitution
as a model. By 1948, the remaining opposition parties were either realigned or dissolved; the Social Democrats merged with the Communists, while the Agrarian Union became a loyal partner of the Communists. During 1948–1949, Orthodox, Muslim, Protestant
Protestant
and Roman Catholic religious organizations were restrained or banned. The Orthodox Church of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
continued functioning but never regained the influence it held under the monarchy; many high roles within the church were assumed by communist functionaries.[4] Dimitrov died in 1949 and for a time Bulgaria
Bulgaria
adopted collective leadership. Vulko Chervenkov
Vulko Chervenkov
led the Communist Party and Vasil Kolarov was prime minister. This broke down a year later, when Kolarov died and Chervenkov added prime minister to his titles. Chervenkov started a process of rapid industrialization modelled after the Soviet industrialisation led by Stalin
Stalin
in the 1930s and agriculture was collectivised. Chervenkov's support base even in the Communist Party was too narrow for him to survive long once his patron Stalin
Stalin
was gone. In March 1954, a year after Stalin's death, Chervenkov was deposed as Party Secretary with the approval of the new leadership in Moscow
Moscow
and replaced by Todor Zhivkov. Chervenkov stayed on as Prime Minister until April 1956, when he was finally dismissed and replaced by Anton Yugov. The highest estimate for the number of partisans at any one time in Bulgaria
Bulgaria
is 18,000.[5]

Forced Macedonization in Pirin
Pirin
Macedonia[edit] Stalin
Stalin
ordered the following to the Bulgarian delegation:

.mw-parser-output .templatequote overflow:hidden;margin:1em 0;padding:0 40px .mw-parser-output .templatequote .templatequotecite line-height:1.5em;text-align:left;padding-left:1.6em;margin-top:0 Cultural autonomy must be granted to Pirin Macedonia
Pirin Macedonia
within the framework of Bulgaria. Tito has shown himself more flexible than you - possibly because he lives in a multiethnic state and has had to give equal rights to the various peoples. Autonomy will be the first step towards the unification of Macedonia, but in view of the present situation there should be no hurry on this matter. Otherwise, in the eyes of the Macedonian people the whole mission of achieving Macedonian autonomy will remain with Tito and you will get the criticism. You seem to be afraid of Kimon Georgiev, you have involved yourselves too much with him and do not want to give autonomy to Pirin Macedonia. That a Macedonian consciousness has not yet developed among the population is of no account. No such consciousness existed in Byelorussia either when we proclaimed it a Soviet Republic. However, later it was shown that a Byelorussian people did, in fact, exist[6]

The government used force, threats and intimidation, branding opponents of the policy as fascists and chauvinists. Some were resettled as far as Vojvodina
Vojvodina
after they had been resettled from Pirin to SR Macedonia
SR Macedonia
for unsuccessful Macedonisation. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
adopted the Communist policy of closer rapprochement with Yugoslavia. Then Dimitrov initiated the idea of a Balkan Federation that would range from Pirin
Pirin
to the Shar Mountains
Shar Mountains
and reflect a Macedonian consciousness. For this purpose, he launched a policy of forced Macedonisation of the Bulgarian population in the Pirin
Pirin
region through conscious change of ethnic self-determination, held by means of administrative coercion and intensive propaganda. In December 1946, he conducted a census in Pirin. State authorities instructed the local population in the Pirin
Pirin
region to mark administrative records such as "Macedonian", including Pomaks, with the exception of those originating within the country. At its meeting on December 21, the Regional Committee of the Workers' Party in Upper Cuma decided to accept a formula indicating 70% of residents were "Macedonians". As a result, among the 281,015 inhabitants, 169,444 were identified as ethnic Macedonians. In 1947 Bulgaria
Bulgaria
and Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia
signed agreements whereby Pirin Macedonia became part of federal Yugoslavia, which proceeded to unify Pirin Macedonia
Pirin Macedonia
with Vardar Macedonia and abolished visa regimes and removed customs services. Shortly thereafter - in 1948, due to the rupture in relations between Tito and Stalin, the contract was dissolved. For a while, BCP and the Bulgarian state held contradictory, protivobalgarska policy on the Macedonian issue. In 1963 at the March Plenum of the Central Committee of the Communist Party, Zhivkov declared that the population in Pirin Macedonia was part of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
that was forced by the Communist Party.

Zhivkov era[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) Eastern Bloc Soviet Socialist Republics Armenia Azerbaijan Byelorussia Estonia Georgia Kazakhstan Kirghizia Latvia Lithuania Moldavia Russia Tajikistan Turkmenia Ukraine Uzbekistan

Allied states Afghanistan Albania Angola Benin Bulgaria China Congo Cuba Czechoslovakia East Germany Ethiopia Grenada Hungary Kampuchea Laos Mongolia Mozambique North Korea Poland Romania Somalia South Yemen Vietnam Yugoslavia

Related organizations Cominform Comecon Warsaw Pact World Federation of Trade Unions World Federation of Democratic Youth

Dissent and opposition Anti-Soviet partisans Albania Bulgaria Croatia Estonia Latvia Lithuania Poland Romania Serbia Ukraine

Guerrilla war in the Baltic states Forest Brothers Operation Jungle Soviet occupation

Protests and uprisings Plzeň 1953 East Germany
East Germany
1953 Georgia 1956 Poznań 1956 Hungary 1956 Novocherkassk 1962 Czechoslovakia
Czechoslovakia
1968 Invasion Red Square 1968

Charter 77
Charter 77
(Czechoslovakia) Solidarity (Poland) Jeltoqsan
Jeltoqsan
(Kazakhstan) Braşov rebellion (Romania) January Events (Lithuania) The Barricades
The Barricades
(Latvia) April 9 tragedy
April 9 tragedy
(Georgia) Black January
Black January
(Azerbaijan)

Cold War
Cold War
events Marshall Plan Czechoslovak coup Tito– Stalin
Stalin
split Berlin Blockade Korean War Secret Speech Sino-Soviet Split Berlin Wall Cuban Missile Crisis Vietnam
Vietnam
War Cuban intervention in Angola Afghan War Moscow
Moscow
Olympics

Decline Singing Revolution Polish Round Table Agreement Revolutions of 1989 Fall of the Berlin Wall January Events in Latvia Breakup of Yugoslavia Yugoslav Wars End of the Soviet Union Fall of communism in Albania Dissolution of Czechoslovakia vte "The friendship between the Soviet and the Bulgarian people — indestructible for eternity", a 1969 Soviet stamp commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Socialist Revolution in Bulgaria The headquarters of the Bulgarian Communist party in 1984 Zhivkov became the leader of the BCP and remained for the following 33 years. The BCP retained its alliance with the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
(CPSU), then led by Nikita Khrushchev. With conservative hardliners pushed aside, this brought in a period of liberal influence and reform. Relations were restored with Yugoslavia, which had previously been shunned by the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
due to its anti-Stalinist stance, and Greece. The trials and executions of Traicho Kostov and other "Titoists" (though not of Nikola Petkov
Nikola Petkov
and other non-Communist victims of the 1947 purges) were officially denounced. The party's militant anti-clericalism was relaxed and the Orthodox Church was no longer targeted. Upheavals in Poland and Hungary in 1956 did not spread to Bulgaria. The Party placed firm restrictions on publicising views considered to be anti-socialist or seditious. In the 1960s some economic reforms were adopted, which allowed the free sale of production that exceeded planned amounts. The country became the most popular tourist destination for people in the Eastern Bloc. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
produced commodities such as cigarettes and chocolate, which were hard to obtain in other socialist countries. Yugov retired in 1962, and Zhivkov consequently became Prime Minister as well as Party Secretary. He survived the Soviet leadership transition from Khrushchev to Brezhnev in 1964.

Debt crisis[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) In 1960, when Bulgaria
Bulgaria
could not pay its debts of $97 million to Western banks, Zhivkov personally addressed a written proposal to Khrushchev asking the USSR to purchase reserves gained over 66 years - from liberation in 1878 to 1944, including 22 tons of gold and 50 tons of silver. The gold was taken to Novosibirsk, where it was further refined and purchased for $35.10 per ounce, a total of 23 million dollars. In 2009, the value of that gold would be $639 million. In subsequent years Zhivkov conducted several secret operations with gold. Between 1960 and 1964 he sold 31.8 tons, using the proceeds to repay Bulgaria's debts mainly to Soviet banks.

16th republic of the Soviet Union[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) On 4 December 1963, Zhivkov proposed closer approximation and future merger of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
and the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
at the Central Committee plenum. This would make it the 16th Republic
Republic
of the Soviet Union. The plenum unanimously approved Zhivkov's proposal.

Prague Spring[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) In 1968 Zhivkov again demonstrated his loyalty to the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
by taking a formal part in the Warsaw Pact
Warsaw Pact
invasion of Czechoslovakia. His troops entered the country but did not take an active part in crushing the Prague Spring. At this point Bulgaria
Bulgaria
became generally regarded as the Soviet Union's most loyal Eastern European ally. The operation involved the 12th and 22nd Infantry Regiments numbering 2,164 people and a T-34
T-34
tank battalion with 26 machines.

1971–1989[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (November 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) Declassified documents of the Communist Bulgaria
Bulgaria
revealed a plan to foment crisis between Turkey
Turkey
and Greece
Greece
in 1971. The operation codenamed "Cross" and the plan was that Bulgarian secret agents would set fire on the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople
Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople
and make it look like the work of Turks. The declassified documents state that “An intervention” in the religious entity would have “significantly damage[d] Turkish-Greek relations and force[d] the United States
United States
to choose one side in the ensuing crisis,”. In addition, the Bulgarians
Bulgarians
also planned to boost the effect of its operation against Greece
Greece
and Turkey
Turkey
by conducting “active measures" “for putting the enemy in a position of delusion." The plan was developed by the 7th Department of the First Main Directorate of the DS (intelligence and secret police services of communist Bulgaria), and was affirmed by Deputy Head of the Directorate on November 16, 1970, and approved by its Head. The operation was supposed to be prepared by the middle of 1971 and then executed, but it was abandoned.[7] In 1971 the new "Zhivkovskata" Constitution
Constitution
added so-called. "Article 1", which grants the PA as the sole ruling a "leading force of society and the state." Zhivkov was promoted to Head of State (Chairman of the State Council) and Stanko Todorov
Stanko Todorov
became Prime Minister. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
signed the Helsinki Accords
Helsinki Accords
in 1975, which guaranteed human rights and fundamental freedoms, including freedom of movement, contacts, information, culture and education, right to work, and the rights to education and medical care. However, subsequent events regarding Bulgarian Turks in the 1980s were a direct violation of these commitments. In 1978, Bulgaria
Bulgaria
attracted international attention when dissident writer Georgi Markov
Georgi Markov
was accosted on a London
London
street by a stranger who rammed his leg with the tip of an umbrella. Markov died shortly afterwards of ricin poisoning. He was the victim of the Bulgarian secret service, as confirmed by KGB
KGB
documents revealing that they had jointly planned the operation with Bulgaria. The Bulgarian People's Army
Bulgarian People's Army
sided with the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
and the Afghan communists during the Soviet–Afghan War
Soviet–Afghan War
in Afghanistan fighting the jihadist guerrillas from 1982 until its withdrawal in 1989.[8]

End of the People's Republic[edit] By the 1980s, the conservatives controlled the government. Some social and cultural liberalization and progress was led by Lyudmila Zhivkova, Todor's daughter, who became a source of strong disapproval and annoyance to the Communist Party due to her unorthodox lifestyle that included the practicing of Eastern religions. She died in 1981, approaching her 39th birthday. A campaign of forced assimilation against the ethnic Turkish minority, who were forbidden to speak the Turkish language[9] and were forced to adopt Bulgarian names took place in the winter of 1984. The issue strained Bulgaria's economic relations with the West. The 1989 expulsion of Turks from Bulgaria
Bulgaria
caused a significant drop in agricultural production in the southern regions due to the loss of around 300,000 workers.[10]

Todor Zhivkov In the late 1980s, the Communists, like their leader, had grown too feeble to resist the demand for change. Liberal outcry at the breakup of an environmental demonstration in Sofia
Sofia
in October 1989 broadened into a general campaign for political reform. More moderate elements in the Communist leadership reacted by deposing Zhivkov and replacing him with foreign minister Petar Mladenov
Petar Mladenov
on November 10, 1989. This move gained a short respite for the Communist Party and prevented revolutionary change. Mladenov promised to open up the regime, stating that he supported multi-party elections. Demonstrations throughout the country led Mladenov to announce that the Communist Party would cede its monopoly over the political system. On January 15, 1990, the National Assembly formally amended the legal code to abolish the Communist Party's "leading role". In June 1990, the first multi-party elections since 1939 were held. Finally on 15 November 1990, the 7th Grand National Assembly voted to change the country's name to the Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
and removed the Communist state
Communist state
emblem from the national flag.[11] It is estimated that between 50,000 and 100,000 people were killed in Bulgaria
Bulgaria
beginning in 1944 as part of agricultural collectivisation and political repression, although documentation is insufficient for a definitive judgement. According to one source, some 31,000 people were reported killed under the regime between 1944 and 1989.[1][12] Figures for fatalities in forced labour camps also remain elusive.[13] A 2009 poll conducted by the Pew Global Attitudes Project found that one-in-nine Bulgarians
Bulgarians
believe ordinary people are better off as a result of the transition to capitalism. Sixteen percent say the multi-party republic is run for the benefit of all people.[14]

Government and politics[edit] Pre-fabricated apartment blocks in Mladost, Sofia In the 1970s, the People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
had a Gini coefficient of 18, ranking among the countries with the lowest levels of income inequality in the world The People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was a one-party Communist state. The Bulgarian Communist Party
Bulgarian Communist Party
created an extensive nomenklatura on each organizational level. The constitution was changed several times, with the Zhivkov Constitution
Constitution
lasting the longest. According to article 1, "The People's Republic
Republic
of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
is a socialist state, headed by the working people of the village and the city. The leading force in society and politics is the Bulgarian Communist Party". The PRB functioned as a one-party people's republic, with People's Committees representing local governance. Their role was to exercise Party decisions in their respective areas and to otherwise defer to popular opinion in decision-making. In the late 1980s, the BCP had an estimated peak of 1,000,000 members—more than 10% of the population.

Military[edit] In 1946, the military rapidly adopted a Soviet military doctrine and organization. The country received large amounts of Soviet weaponry, and eventually established a domestic military vehicle production capability. By the year 1988, the Bulgarian People's Army (Българска народна армия) numbered 152,000 men,[15] serving in four different branches - Land Forces, Navy, Air and Air Defense Forces, and Missile Forces. The BPA operated an impressive amount of equipment for the country's size - 3,000 tanks, 2,000 armored vehicles, 2,500 large caliber artillery systems, over 500 combat aircraft, 33 combat vessels, as well as 67 Scud
Scud
missile launchers, 24 SS-23
SS-23
launchers and dozens of FROG-7
FROG-7
artillery rocket launchers.[16][17][18]

Economy[edit]

Percentage of exports of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
(1945–1948) [19]

1945

1946

1947

1948 (Jan. to May)

Soviet Union

95.2%

66%

51.9%

41.5%

Eastern Europe

2.3%

17%

33.7%

34.2%

Britain

0.5%

0.1%

0.3%

United States

5.2%

6.0%

0.2%

Total

12,397,00

14,942,000

24,532,740

12,127,909

Percentage of imports of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
(1945–1948) [19]

1945

1946

1947

1948 (Jan. to May)

Soviet Union

79.6%

81.9%

60.6%

58.9%

Eastern Europe

6.8%

8.8%

26.9%

26.2%

Britain

0.7%

1.0%

United States

3.5%

1.3%

1.1%

Total

5,820,000

17,514,000

21,415,418

16,968,786

The PRB adopted a centrally planned economy, similar to those in other COMECON
COMECON
states. In the mid-1940s, when collectivisation began, Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was a primarily agrarian state, with some 80% of its population located in rural areas. Production facilities of all sectors were rapidly nationalised. Chervenkov finally ended all private economic activity. Bulgarian agricultural productivity increased rapidly after collectivisation. Large-scale mechanisation resulted in an immense growth in labour productivity.[20] Government subsidies covered the large losses from the artificially low consumer prices. Chervenkov's Stalinist
Stalinist
policy led to a massive industrialisation and development of the energy sector, which remained one of Bulgaria's most advanced economic sectors. His rule lasted from 1950 to 1956, and saw the construction of dozens of dams and hydroelectric powerplants, chemical works, the Elatsite gold and copper mine and many others. The war-time coupon system was abolished, and healthcare and education were government provided. All this was achieved with strict government control and organization. Labor came from prisoner brigades and the Bulgarian Brigadier Movement - a youth labor movement where young people worked on construction projects.

Vitosha, the first Bulgarian-made computer, as the People's Republic of Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was a major producer of electronics and computers, thus receiving the nickname " Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley
of the Eastern Bloc"[21] Bulgaria
Bulgaria
was involved in computer construction, which earned it the nickname " Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley
of the Eastern Bloc."[citation needed] Bulgarian engineers developed the first Bulgarian computer, the Vitosha,[citation needed] as well as the Pravetz computers. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
is currently the only Balkan Country
Country
to operate a supercomputer, an IBM Blue Gene/P. In the 1960s, Zhivkov introduced reforms that had a positive effect on the country's economy. He put emphasis on light industry, agriculture, tourism, as well as on Information Technology
Information Technology
in the 1970s and the 1980s.[22] Surplus agricultural production could be sold freely, prices were lowered even more, and new equipment for light industrial production was imported. Bulgaria
Bulgaria
became the first Communist country to purchase a license from Coca-Cola
Coca-Cola
in 1965.[23] Despite relative stability, the economy shared the same drawbacks of other countries from Eastern Europe - it traded almost entirely with the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
(more than 60%) and planners did not take into account whether there were markets for the goods produced. This resulted in surpluses of certain products, while other commodities were in deficit. The other main trade partners were East Germany
East Germany
and Czechoslovakia, while countries such as Mongolia
Mongolia
and various African countries were also large-scale importers of Bulgarian goods. The country enjoyed good trade relations with various non-Communist countries, most notably West Germany
West Germany
and Italy.[24] In order to combat the low quality of many goods, a comprehensive State standard system was introduced in 1970, which included strict quality requirements for all sorts of products, machines and buildings. PRB had an average GDP per capita for an Eastern Bloc
Eastern Bloc
country. Average purchasing power was one of the lowest in the Eastern Bloc, mostly due to the larger availability of commodities than in other socialist countries. Workers employed abroad often received higher payments, thus could afford a wider range of goods to purchase. According to official figures, in 1988 100 out of 100 households had a television set, 95 out of 100 had a radio, 96 out of 100 had a refrigerator and 40 out of 100 had an automobile.[25]

Per capita GDP (1990 $)[26]

1950

1973

1989[27]

1990

United States $9,561 $16,689 $23,059 $23,200

Finland $4,253 $11,085 $16,945 $16,866

Austria $3,706 $11,234 $16,359 $16,894

Italy $3,501 $10,634 $15,969 $16,313

Czechoslovakia $3,501 $7,041 $8,729 $8,895 (Czech)$7,762 (Slovak)

Soviet Union $2,841 $6,059 $7,111 $6,894

Hungary $2,479 $5,595 $6,902 $6,458

Poland $2,446 $5,339 $5,683 $5,113

Spain $2,188 $7,661 $11,581 $12,054

Portugal $2,086 $7,062 $10,371 $10,826

Greece $1,915 $7,655 $10,111 $10,015

Bulgaria $1,651 $5,284 $6,217 $5,596

Yugoslavia $1,427 $4,333 $6,202 $5,646

Romania $1,182 $3,477 $3,940 $3,510

Albania $1,101 $2,273 $2,477 $2,499

Automotive industry[edit] Since 1965, Renault
Renault
and Fiat
Fiat
chose Bulgaria
Bulgaria
to site their factories to make automobiles for sale in the Eastern Bloc
Eastern Bloc
partnership.

Bulgarrenault
Bulgarrenault
started in 1966 until 1971 making cars based on Renault 8 and Renault
Renault
10. The factories were in Plovdiv. In the end around 6500 cars were produced. The Bulgarian version of Alpine A110
Alpine A110
was also made under the marque Bulgaralpine. In 1967, Pirin- Fiat
Fiat
built around 730 cars until 1971 from the models Fiat
Fiat
850 and Fiat
Fiat
124. In 1968 a contract was signed between the Bulgarian government and Moskvitch
Moskvitch
for building Moskvitch
Moskvitch
408 and later Moskvitch
Moskvitch
2141 (from which around 12,000 cars were produced by 1990). Culture[edit] Further information: Bulgarian cosmonaut program Culture in PRB was strictly regulated by the government, although there were some periods of liberalization (meaning entrance in Bulgaria
Bulgaria
of Western literature, music, etc.). The thaw in intellectual life had continued from 1951 until the middle of the decade.[citation needed] Chervenkov's resignation and the literary and cultural flowering in the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
created expectations that the process would continue, but the Hungarian revolution of fall 1956 ended the experiment.

Chervenkov was appointed minister of education and culture. In 1957 and 1958 he purged the leadership of the Bulgarian Writers' Union and dismissed liberal journalists and editors from their positions. His crackdowns effectively ended the "Bulgarian thaw" of independent writers and artists inspired by Khrushchev's 1956 speech against Stalinism.[28]

References[edit]

^ a b Hanna Arendt Centre in Sofia, with Dinyu Sharlanov and Venelin I. Ganev. Crimes Committed by the Communist Regime in Bulgaria. Country
Country
report. "Crimes of the Communist Regimes" Conference. 24–26 February 2010, Prague.

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^ COMMUNIST BULGARIA’S INTELLIGENCE PLOTTED GREECE – TURKEY CONFLICT BY SETTING ON FIRE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCHATE OF CONSTANTINOPLE, SECRET FILES REVEAL

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^ [2] Archived 2012-12-13 at Archive.today

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Works cited[edit] Maddison, Angus (2006). The world economy. OECD Publishing. ISBN 92-64-02261-9. External links[edit]

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