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Bulgaria: Reform Mechanisms
Country Study > Chapter 3 > The Economy > Market Reform > Reform Mechanisms


Although both the BSP and the UDF agreed on the need for market-oriented reforms, disagreements on methods and timing continued in 1991. The BSP advocated slow transformation, to minimize economic dislocations and hardship (and also to preserve privileged positions for party members whenever possible). The UDF believed that a market economy could not be installed piecemeal, but could only be effective as a form of "shock therapy." The UDF saw free market features such as market prices and privatization as incompatible with socialist institutions such as large state-owned enterprises. The huge operating losses of such enterprises were largely responsible for a severe 1990 decline in NMP. The model advocated by the UDF was the renaissance of the Polish economy through private enterprise. This model justified severe, short-term social costs because only by inflicting them could the economy be disentangled from the moribund apparatus that remained from the central planning era.

Progress was made on some fronts even before formation of the first coalition government in early 1991. In September 1990, Bulgaria's admission to the IMF promised access to hard currency loans and help in restructuring the economy. New agricultural banks began providing credit to private farmers tilling the land provided in the 1991 Arable Land Law; the first private bank was opened; and Bulgaria applied for membership to the General Agreements on Tariffs and Tradeand the World Bank.

Data as of June 1992

Last Updated: June 1992

Editor's Note: Country Studies included here were published between 1988 and 1998. The Country study for Bulgaria was first published in 1992. Where available, the data has been updated through 2008. The date at the bottom of each section will indicate the time period of the data. Information on some countries may no longer be up to date. See the "Research Completed" date at the beginning of each study on the Title Page or the "Data as of" date at the end of each section of text. This information is included due to its comprehensiveness and for historical purposes.

Note that current information from the CIA World Factbook, U.S. Department of State Background Notes, Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Country Briefs, the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Country Profiles, and the World Bank can be found on

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