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Bulgaria granted 10 267 residence permits to non-EU nationals in 2020

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Bulgarian passports and citizenship

Bulgaria granted 10 267 residence permits to non-EU nationals in 2020. This is according to figures released on July 2 by the National Statistical Institute (NSI).

In 2015, Bulgaria granted 9595 residence permits to third-country nationals. This is with the number rising to 7666 in 2016, a total of 10 958 in 2017, 11 864 in 2018 and 13 500 in 2019.

The report did not give a breakdown by nationality.

The NSI said that of the residence permits granted to third-country nationals in 2020. Total of 2902 were for family reasons. 1154 for education and study.  2388 on the basis of paid work and 3823 were for “other” reasons, not defined in the report.

In 2020, Bulgaria issued 428 Blue Cards . This is the work permit granted in the EU for educated and skilled non-EU nationals. Of these, 299 were first-time issues and 129 were renewals. The total in 2020 was the highest in five years.

According to the NSI, in 2020 a total of 51 723 non-EU nationals in Bulgaria had permanent or long-term residence. This is the highest number since 2015.

If you are an EU citizen, holder of a valid ID card or passport, you can reside in Bulgaria for a period of up to three months. This is following your entry into the country. You must then apply for a long-term residence permit.

In 2015, there were 13 670 non-EU nationals in Bulgaria with permanent or long-term residence.

The figure rose to 16 205 in 2016, 31 587 in 2017, 33 524 in 2018 and 45 236 in 2019, according to the NSI.