A total of BGN 361.1 M have been spent on research and development in Bulgaria 2009, the National Statistical Institute (NSI) reports.
This means a 10.8% increase in Bulgaria's R&D spending in comparison to 2008.
R&D spending, calculated as a percentage of GDP, is one of the key criteria for the EU counties' progress on the Europe 2020 strategy. The long-term target is 3%.
In Bulgaria, money spent for research and development is 0.53% of the GDP, as estimated for 2009. This solidifies the consistent trend of increasing the spending since 2005 when it was 0.46%.
However, in 2008 Bulgaria still had the second lowest percentage of GDP (0,49%) spent on R&D of all 27 countries in EU – after Slovakia, which had 0.47%.
The largest share of money spent on R&D in Bulgaria– 66% (BGN 199.5 M) - goes for the Government sector, followed by the Enterprise sector with BGN 108.2 M. The Higher Education sector received BGN 50.2 M, which is a 4.4% increase year on year.
Bulgaria's R&D activities are financed by the state budget, the private business and by foreign investors, with the Government being the main investor with 60.5%.
A total of 18 230 people are currently employed in the Bulgarian R&D sector, which is a 5.9% increase in comparison to 2008, according to NSI.