One in three Bulgarians cannot afford to keep their homes adequately warm

Photo: ® Reuters

Bulgaria’s printed media inform about the latest research of Eurostat, according to which 36.5% of the Bulgarians cannot afford to heat their home sufficiently. Bulgaria ranks first in the EU under this indicator, followed by Lithuania where 29% of its citizens cannot afford to keep their homes adequately warm. 26% of the Greeks, 23% of the Cypriots and 20% of the Portuguese nationals face this problem as well. Only 8% of the EU population cannot afford to heat their homes sufficiently. Nearly 2% of the population in Luxembourg, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria cannot afford to keep their homes adequately warm, Eurostat statistics further shows.

Meanwhile, over three-fifths of the Bulgarian population (61.7%) has difficulties making both ends meet. However, Bulgaria is second after Greece (76.8%) in this ranking. Nearly half of the population in Croatia (51.4%) and 59.8% of the Cypriots experience similar difficulties.

While in all 28 EU member states the wealthiest 20% of the population receives over one-third of all incomes, in Bulgaria this share is highest. The wealthiest 20% Bulgarians receive 44.2% of all incomes. Besides, the incomes of the wealthy Bulgarians increase at higher rates than the incomes of the poor citizens. In Bulgaria, Sweden, Cyprus and Lithuania the incomes of the wealthiest 20% people rose 2% in four years only. In the same period in many EU countries this share has decreased, i.e. the low salaries increased at higher rates in these countries. France and Great Britain are among these countries. Croatia, Poland and Slovakia also fall within this category. Banker daily reminds that according to forecasts of the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria (CITUB) made several days ago the number of the energy-poor Bulgarians will increase, because in 2019 the prices of natural gas and industrial electricity are rising. The price of bread, meat and dairy products is also expected to see another increase this year. Data of Eurostat shows that in 2017 the Bulgarians spent 30% of their household income on food.

Written by: Stoimen Pavlov

English version: Kostadin Atanasov

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