Assessment Report on the Impact of COVID-19 on Sofia’s Economy

1 April, 2020

In cooperation with the team of Innovative Sofia, we developed the first Assessment report on the impact of COVID-19 on Sofia’s economy.  There you can read about:

  • The three scenarios for the development of the economy
  • The impact by sectors at international and European level
  • The impact on the development of Sofia’s economy

It is reasonable to expect that Sofia’s GDP will shrink by 1-3% in 2020 г., but there are more catastrophic scenarios, too. The effect of a potential economic recession will be very similar to the situation in Europe. This is true especially for Sofia, whose economy is linked to the EU’s economy to a higher degree. However, recessions in the past were followed by a rapid recovery as a result of the return to normal economic life.

Sofia has the best labor market in Bulgaria with an unemployment rate of under 2% and employment of nearly 80% of the population in active age by the end of 2019. The capital has a relatively big potential to respond to the unemployment caused as a result of the crisis.

Most affected will be those employed in the tourism and travel sector, over 35 000 people, culture and sport – 10 000 people. Moderately affected will be the employees in the industrial sector. The least affected will be the employees in the utilities, ICT, professional activities, where the impact is softer because of the opportunity for remote work.  

You can find more in the full report here.

The Assessment Report on the impact of COVID-19 on Sofia’s economy was developed by the Digitalisation, Innovation and Economic Development Department of Sofia Municipality (Innovative Sofia) and the Sofia Municipal Privatisation and Investment Agency (Invest Sofia) with the support of the Institute for Market Economics (IME), Sofia Tourism Administration, the Bulgarian Convention Bureau, Automotive Cluster Bulgaria, the Bulgarian E-Commerce Association, the Culture Directorate of Sofia Municipality, the Association for Innovation, Business Excellence, Services and Technology (AIBEST) and representatives of the business ecosystem in the city.