Foreign relations of Bulgaria

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Foreign relations of the Republic of Bulgaria are the Bulgarian government's external relations with the outside world. Bulgaria has generally good foreign relations with its neighbors and has proved to be a constructive force in the region under socialist and democratic governments alike. Promoting regional stability, Bulgaria hosted a Southeast European Foreign Ministers meeting in July 1996, and an OSCE conference on Black Sea cooperation in November 1995. Bulgaria also participated in the 1996 South Balkan Defense Ministerial in Albania and is active in the Southeast European Cooperative Initiative. Bulgaria's main focus is the Euro-Atlantic integration since 1997 and the efforts of the governments since then led to admission to NATO in 2004 and the European Union in 2007. Its main allies are Greece and Romania, while it maintains good relations with Serbia and the rest of the Balkans.


With their close historical, cultural, and economic ties, Bulgaria seeks a mutually beneficial relationship with Russia, on which it is largely dependent for energy supplies. Sporadic negotiations are underway among Greece, Bulgaria, and Russia for construction of the Burgas-Alexandroupoli pipeline to transport Caspian Sea oil from the Black Sea port of Burgas to Alexandroupoli on the northern Aegean coast.

Bulgaria's EU Association Agreement came into effect in 1994, and Bulgaria formally applied for full EU membership in December 1995. During the 1999 EU summit in Helsinki, the country was invited to start membership talks with the Union. On January 1, 2007 Bulgaria officially became a member of the European Union. In 1996, Bulgaria acceded to the Wassenaar Arrangement controlling exports of weapons and sensitive technology to countries of concern and also was admitted to the World Trade Organization. Bulgaria is a member of the Zangger Committee and the Nuclear Suppliers Group. After a period of equivocation under a socialist government, in March 1997 a UDF-led caretaker cabinet applied for full NATO membership, which became a reality in April 2004.

Bulgaria and the United States signed a Defense Cooperation Agreement in 2006 providing for military bases and training camps of the U.S. Army in Bulgaria, as part of the Pentagon's restructuring plan.

In November 2010, Bulgaria's Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov formally announced his team proposes to close seven embassies as part of a plan for restructuring and austerity measures. See Decision Number 272 dated from 19 November 2010 of the Council of Ministers.

Thus, in 2011, Bulgaria will most likely shut down its diplomatic missions in Sudan, Angola, Zimbabwe, Cambodia, Thailand, Mexico, and Tunisia. The choice is based on a scrutinizing financial analysis and on the necessity to optimize the diplomatic corps, the Ministry says. The staff of the Bulgarian diplomatic corps will be reduced by 15 people in total.

In June 2010, media reports claimed that Bulgaria considers closing a total of 30 of its diplomatic missions abroad. Currently, Bulgaria has 83 embassies, 6 permanent representations, 20 consular offices, and 2 diplomatic bureaus. The proposed closures have been backed by PM Borisov who described some of Bulgaria's embassies as useless.[1]


Flags of NATO, Bulgaria, European Union at the Military club of Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

Bulgaria joined NATO's Partnership for Peace in 1994 and applied for NATO membership in 1997. During the November 2002 Prague Summit Bulgaria was one of seven former socialist countries invited to join the Alliance. Bulgaria became a member of NATO in March 2004. The country is also working toward NATO compatibility in communications and training, and has established a Peacekeeping Training Center.


In 2003, Bulgaria was elected as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, proving to be one of 3 closest U.S. allies during the Iraqi Crisis, together with the UK and Spain. Bulgaria also presided the OSCE in 2004.

Illicit drugs

Major European transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and, to a lesser degree, South American cocaine for the European market; limited producer of precursor chemicals.

By country

Country Formal relations began Notes
 Afghanistan 1961-07-12
 Algeria 1964
 Angola 1975-11-20
  • Since 1976, Bulgaria has an embassy in Luanda.[7]
  • Angola is represented in Bulgaria through its embassy in Athens (Greece).[8]
 Argentina 1931
 Armenia 1992
 Australia 1972
 Austria 1878
 Azerbaijan 1992-06-05
 Belarus 1992-03-26
 Belgium 1879
 Bosnia and Herzegovina 1992-01-15
 Czech Republic 1920-09-27
 People's Republic of China 1949-10-04
 Colombia 1973-05-08
  • Colombia is represented through its embassy in Warsaw (Poland), and counts with an Honorary Consulate in Sofia.
  • Bulgaria is represented in Colombia through its embassy in Caracas (Venezuela).[31]
 Croatia 1992-08-13
 Cyprus see Bulgaria–Cyprus relations
 Denmark See Bulgaria–Denmark relations
  • Bulgaria has an honorary consulate in Quito.
 Estonia 1921-05-20
 Finland 1918-08-05
 France 1879-07-08
 Georgia 1992-06-05
 Greece 1908 see Greco-Bulgarian relations

Relations between Greece (the Hellenic Republic) and Bulgaria (the Republic of Bulgaria) have been very cordial since the 1950s, due to the strong cultural, political and religious ties between the two nations, preceded in the earlier 20th century by periods of intense mutual hostility. Since Bulgaria's independence in 1876, Greece and Bulgaria faced each other in three major wars: the Second Balkan War, the First World War and the Second World War, in which Bulgaria briefly occupied parts of northern Greece.

 Hungary 1920
 India 1954
 Indonesia 1956-09-21 see Bulgaria–Indonesia relations

Bulgaria was among the States that recognized Indonesia's independence since its Proclamation of Independence on August 17, 1945. The two countries established diplomatic relations on September 21, 1956. Bulgaria has had an embassy in Jakarta since October 1958 and Indonesia has had an embassy in Sofia Since 1960.[40]

 Iran 1897
 Ireland 1990
 Italy 1879
 Japan 1959
 Kazakhstan 1992-07-05
 Kosovo 2008-03-20


 Lebanon 1966-09-19
Main article: HIV trial in Libya
 Republic of Macedonia
  • Bulgaria is represented in Malta through its embassy in Rome (Italy).[65]
  • Malta has 2 honorary consulates in Bulgaria (in Sofia and Varna).[66]
 Mexico 6 January 1938 See Bulgaria–Mexico relations
 Moldova 1992-02-05
 Mongolia 1950-04-22 see Bulgaria–Mongolia relations
  • Until the beginning of the 1990s Bulgaria was Mongolia's 3rd biggest trading partner.
 Montenegro 2006-08-02
 Morocco 1961-09-01
 Norway 1906-08-21
 North Korea 1948-11-29 Foreign relations of North Korea
 Pakistan 1970 See Pakistan-Bulgarian relations
  • Since 1974, Bulgaria has an embassy in Islamabad.[76]
  • Pakistan reopened its embassy in Sofia. Pakistan has an embassy in Sofia.
 Paraguay 1992-12-02
 Peru 1969
  • Peru closed its embassy in Sofia for economic reasons in 2003. Peru is now represented in Bulgaria through its embassy in Athens (Greece).[78]
  • Bulgaria is represented in Peru through its embassy in Brasília (Brazil).[79]
 Poland 1920s
 Portugal 1925
 Romania see Bulgaria–Romania relations

Bulgarian relations with Romania featured regular official visits by the two presidents. Romanian-Bulgarian relations are developing "very intensively" because of EU accession, since Romania and Bulgaria joined together the European Union in 2007. Romania and Bulgaria have never had any serious conflicts, other than a territorial dispute over the Dobruja region in 1913-1940, now largely forgotten. Vidin and Calafat have perhaps the closest relations of any towns along this lower section of the Danube. There is a regular ferry service, so locals here have regular interchange with their neighbors across the border.

 Russia 1879-07-07 see Bulgaria–Russia relations
 Serbia 1879-01-18 see Bulgaria–Serbia relations
 Slovakia 1993-01-01
 South Africa 1992-02-02
  • Bulgaria has an embassy in Pretoria
  • Since 1992, South Africa has an embassy in Sofia.[90]
 South Korea 23 March 1990[91] See Bulgaria – South Korea relations
 Spain 1910-05-08
 Sudan 1956-07-01 see Bulgaria–Sudan relations

In 1967, Bulgaria sent the first Bulgarian ambassador to Khartoum. The activities of the Bulgarian embassy in Khartoum were terminated in April 1990, and later reestablished in March, 2005. In 2006 the General Consulate of the Sudan, in Sofia, Bulgaria has been upgraded to the rank of embassy.[96]

 Sweden 1914-07-06
  Switzerland 1905
 Syria 1954-07-24
 Thailand 1974-04-10
  • Since 1975, Bulgaria has an embassy in Bangkok.[103]
  • Thailand has an honorary consulate in Sofia.[104]
  • There is a Thai Village in Bulgaria since 2006 [105]
 Tunisia 1956
 Ukraine 1992
 Uzbekistan 1992-09-12 See Bulgaria–Uzbekistan relations

Bulgaria has an embassy in Tashkent.[112] Uzbekistan is represented in Bulgaria through a non resident ambassador based in Tashkent (in the Foreign Ministry.)[113] Bulgaria provides a link in the trade corridor between Uzbekistan and the European Union, with important Black Sea ports. The two countries are interested in expanding trade by this route.[114] However, despite repeated discussions on the subject, Uzbekistan has so far declined to supply natural gas to the Nabucco pipeline, which, if built, would feed gas to Europe via Bulgaria.[115]

 United Kingdom 1879
 United States 1903 See Bulgaria – United States relations

Bulgarian-American relations, first formally established in 1903, have moved from missionary activity and American support for Bulgarian independence in the late 19th century to the growth of trade and commerce in the early 20th century, to reluctant hostility during World War I and open war and bombardment in World War II, to ideological confrontation during the Cold War, to partnership with the United States in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and growing political, military and economic ties in the beginning of the 21st century.

 Vietnam 1950-02-08

See also


  2. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Afghan embassy in Sofia
  3. Bulgarian embassy in Kabul
  4. 1 2 Bulgaria. Embassy Pages.
  5. Algerian Ministry of Foreign Affairs about relations with Bulgaria (in French only)
  6. Bulgarian embassy in Algiers
  7. Bulgarian embassy in Luanda
  8. Angolan embassy in Athens (also accredited to Bulgaria)
  9. List of Treaties ruling relations Argentina and Bulgaria (Argentine Foreign Ministry, in Spanish)
  10. Bulgarian embassy in Yerevan
  11. Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade about relations with Bulgaria
  12. Bulgarian embassy in Canberra
  13. Austrian Foreign Ministry: list of bilateral treaties with Bulgaria (in German only)
  14. Bulgarian embassy in Vienna
  15. "Bulgariens Präsident von pünktlichem EU-Beitritt 2007 überzeugt". he Federal President of the Republic of Austria. Retrieved 2009-05-14.
  16. Embassy of Azerbaijan in Bulgaria
  17. Embassy of Bulgaria in Azerbaijan
  18. Belarusian embassy in Sofia (in Belarusian and Bulgarian only)
  19. Bulgarian embassy in Minsk
  20. Belgian embassy Sofia
  21. Bulgarian embassy in Brussels (in Bulgarian and French only)
  22. Bulgarian embassy in Sarajevo
  23. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Bosnian embassy in Sofia
  24. Bulgarian embassy in Prague
  25. Czech Republic embassy in Sofia
  26. Bulgarian embassy in Beijing
  27. Chinese embassy in Sofia
  28. Bulgarian embassy in Ottawa
  29. Bulgarian consulate in Toronto
  30. Canadian Foreign Affairs and International Trade Office about the relations with Bulgaria
  32. Bulgarian embassy in Sofia
  33. Croatian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and European Integration: list of bilateral treaties with Bulgaria
  34. Bulgarian embassy in Tbilissi
  35. Georgian embassy in Sofia
  36. Bulgarian embassy in Berlin (in German and Bulgarian only)
  37. German embassy in Sofia (in German and Bulgarian only)
  38. Bulgarian embassy in New Delhi
  39. Indian embassy in Sofia
  40. Official Website of the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia in Sofia, Bulgaria.
  41. Bulgarian embassy in Tehran
  42. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Iranian embassy in Sofia
  43. Iranian embassy in Sofia
  44. Bulgarian embassy in Baghdad
  45. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Iraqi embassy in Sofia
  46. Bulgarian embassy in Dublin
  47. Irish embassy in Bulgaria
  48. Bulgarian embassy in Tel Aviv
  49. Israeli embassy in Sofia
  50. Bulgarian embassy in Rome
  51. Bulgarian general consulate in Milan
  52. Italian embassy in Sofia
  53. Bulgarian embassy in Tokyo
  54. Japanese embassy in Sofia (in Bulgarian and Japanese only)
  55. Bulgarian embassy in Almaty
  56. "Sofia Officially Recognizes Pristina Sovereignty". 2008-03-20. Retrieved 2008-03-20.
  57. "Bulgaria to Issue Visas in Pristina",, 27 May 2008. Link accessed 2008-05-27.
  58. Bulgarian Foreign Ministry: direction of the Bulgarian honorary consulate in Riga
  59. Bulgarian Foreign Ministry: direction of the Latvian honorary consulate in Sofia
  60. Bulgarian embassy in Beirut
  61. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Lebanese embassy in Sofia
  62. Bulgarian embassy in Vilnius
  63. Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign affairs
  64. Bulgarian Policies on the Republic of Macedonia: Recommendations on the development of good neighbourly relations following Bulgaria’s accession to the EU and in the context of NATO and EU enlargement in the Western Balkans. Sofia: Manfred Wörner Foundation, 2008. 80 pp. (Trilingual publication in Bulgarian, Macedonian and English) ISBN 978-954-92032-2-6
  65. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  66. Maltese Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  67. Embassy of Bulgaria in Mexico City (in Bulgarian and English)
  68. Embassy of Mexico in Budapest, Hungary (in English, Hungarian and Spanish)
  69. Bulgarian embassy in Chişinău
  70. Moldovan Ministry of Foreign Affairs about relations with Bulgaria
  71. Bulgarian embassy in Rabat
  72. Bulgarian embassy The Hague
  73. Dutch embassy Sofia
  74. Bulgarian embassy in Oslo
  75. Norwegian embassy in Sofia
  76. Bulgarian embassy in Islamabad
  77. Paraguayan Ministry of Foreign Relations
  78. Peruvian Ministry of Foreign Relations about relations with Bulgaria (in Spanish only)
  79. Bulgarian embassy in Brasilia (also accredited to Peru)
  80. Bulgarian embassy in Warsaw
  81. Polish embassy in Sofia
  82. Bulgarian embassy in Lisbon
  83. Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: direction of the Portuguese embassy in Sofia
  84. Bulgarian embassy in Moscow (in Bulgarian and Russian)
  85. Russian embassy in Sofia
  86. Bulgarian embassy in Bratislava
  87. Slovakia has an embassy in Sofia
  88. Bulgarian embassy in Ljubljana
  89. Slovenian Foreign Ministry: directions of diplomatic representation of both countries
  90. South African Embassy in Sofia
  91. 1 2
  92. Bulgarian embassy in Seoul
  93. South Korean embassy in Sofia
  94. Bulgarian embassy in Madrid
  95. Spanish embassy in Sofia (in Bulgarian and Spanish only)
  96. "Bulgarian-Sudanese Diplomatic Relations". Sudan Embassy in Bulgaria. Retrieved 2009-07-18.
  97. Bulgarian embassy in Stockholm
  98. Swedish embassy in Sofia
  99. Bulgarian embassy in Bern
  100. Swiss embassy in Sofia
  101. Bulgarian embassy in Damascus
  102. Syrian embassy in Sofia
  103. Bulgarian embassy in Bangkok
  104. Thai honorary consulate in Sofia
  105. Thai Village in Bulgaria
  106. Bulgarian embassy in Tunis
  107. Tunisian Ministry of Foreign Affairs about relations with Bulgaria (in French only)
  108. Bulgarian embassies in Turkey
  109. Turkish embassy in Sofia
  110. Bulgarian embassy in Kiev (in Bulgarian only)
  111. "Bulgarian embassy in Tashkent". Retrieved 2009-05-05.
  112. "Uzbek Ministry of Foreign Affairs". Retrieved 2009-05-05.
  113. "Uzbek-Bulgarian Relations Are Developing Dynamically". Turkish Weekly. February 24, 2009. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  114. "Uzbekistan Not Interested in Supplying Natural Gas for Nabucco". Novinite Sofia News Agency. 2008-11-07. Retrieved 2009-05-05.
  115. Bulgarian embassy in London
  116. British embassy in Sofia
  117. Bulgarian embassy in Hanoi
  118. Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs about relations with Bulgaria

External links

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