From the 2021 Census: How many are the Bulgarians, Turks and Roma in the Country

Society | November 24, 2022, Thursday // 16:24
Bulgaria: From the 2021 Census: How many are the Bulgarians, Turks and Roma in the Country @economic.bg

As of September 7, 2021, the Bulgarian ethnic group comprised 5,118,494, or 84.6% of the persons who answered the question about ethnicity. Compared to 2011, the share of this group decreased by 0.2 percentage points. This is shown by the NSI data from the last census.

508,378, or 8.4% of the respondents identified themselves as belonging to the Turkish ethnic group. Their relative share decreased by 0.4 percentage points compared to 2011.

266,720, or 4.4% of the respondents, self-identified as the third largest Roma ethnic group. The relative share of the population from this ethnic group decreased by 0.5 percentage points compared to 2011.

79,006 people, or 1.3%, identified themselves as belonging to other ethnic groups.

15,746 (0.3%) persons indicated that they could not self-determine. 63,767, or 1.0% of respondents, answered "I do not wish to answer".

At the beginning of the last century, 18.2% of Bulgarians, 16.1% of Turks and 20.5% of Roma lived in cities. Over time, the Bulgarian ethnically self-identified population has urbanized considerably more than the other two main ethnic groups. As of September 7, 2021, 77.5% of the Bulgarian, 38.4% of the Turkish and 51.0% of the Roma ethnic groups live in the cities. The process of urbanization least affected the Turkish ethnic group, the majority of which throughout the period 1900 - 2021 continued to live in villages.

The Bulgarian ethnic community predominates in all districts with the exception of Kardzhali and Razgrad regions, where it forms 29.0 and 39.7% of the regions’ population, respectively.

The persons who identified themselves as belonging to the Turkish ethnic community are territorially concentrated mainly in the districts of Kardzhali (64.5%), Razgrad (50.4%), Targovishte (37.7%), Silistra (37.1%) and Shumen (31.3%). In total, almost half of the population, self-identified to the Turkish ethnic group lives in the five regions - 48.4%.

Persons from the Roma ethnic group are distributed territorially in all regions of the country. The largest share of the Roma ethnic group is in the regions of Sliven - 15.3%, and Montana - 11.5%, followed by Shumen - 8.0%, Dobrich - 7.2%, and Yambol - 7.1%.

The process of aging of the population, characteristic of the last decades, affects to the greatest extent persons from the Bulgarian ethnic community. In this group, the share of the population aged 65 and over is the highest - 25.0%, at 19.8% and 7.3% respectively for the Turkish and Roma ethnic groups.

Among the three main ethnic communities, the share of the young population (0 - 14 years of age) is the highest among the Roma - 26.6% of those self-identified as this ethnic group. The share of young people among the Turkish ethnic group is almost twice as small (13.8%) and this share is the lowest among the Bulgarian community - 12.0%.

There are significant differences in the educational structure of the population by ethnicity. While 79.7% of self-identified Bulgarians aged seven and over have higher education (29.2% with higher education and 50.5% with secondary education), 44.0% of the population from the Turkish ethnic group have higher education (8.1% with higher education and 35.9 % with secondary education), and for the Roma ethnic group, the relative share of this indicator is 15.2%, respectively 0.8% with higher education and 14.4% with completed secondary education.

Compared to 2011, a positive trend of increasing the absolute number and the relative share of persons with completed higher and secondary education is observed in all three main ethnic groups. In ten years, the share of the population with completed higher education increased from 0.3 to 0.8% among the Roma ethnic group, from 4.1 to 8.1% among the Turkish, and from 22.8% in 2011 to 29.2% in 2021 among those self-identified as belonging to the Bulgarian ethnic group .

Of the persons aged 15 and over, 0.3% of those self-identified as belonging to the Bulgarian ethnic group, 1.9% from the Turkish and 6.4% from the Roma ethnic group have never attended school.

Children of compulsory school age (7 - 15 years of age) left out of the educational process are 8.0% of the Roma community, 4.4% of the Turkish community and 1.3% of the self-identified Bulgarian ethnic group in this age group.

Literacy is defined as the ability to read and write with understanding of what is read and written. As of September 7, 2021, 11.8% of self-identified Roma ethnic group aged 9 and over are illiterate. This share is 3.4% and 0.5% for the self-identified Turkish and Bulgarian ethnic groups, respectively.

The data on the economic characteristics of the population refer to the position of persons on the labor market during the week preceding the critical moment of the census - August 31 - September 6, 2021.

There are significant differences in the labor market participation of individuals from different ethnic groups. The employment rate in the age group from 15 to 64 years is highest among the Bulgarian ethnic group with an employment rate of 66.8%, and the lowest among the Roma ethnic group - 21.6%.

Unemployment is highest among the self-identified Roma ethnic group. More than half (51.2%) of economically active persons from this ethnic group were unemployed during the observed period. Every fifth economically active person aged 15-64 from the Turkish ethnic group was also unemployed during the observed period. This indicator is the lowest among self-identified Bulgarian ethnic groups - 8.4% of economically active persons.

The data on the economic characteristics of the population refer to the position of persons on the labor market during the week preceding the critical moment of the census - August 31 - September 6, 2021.

There are significant differences in the labor market participation of individuals from different ethnic groups. The employment rate in the age group from 15 to 64 years is highest among the Bulgarian ethnic group with an employment rate of 66.8%, and the lowest among the Roma ethnic group - 21.6%.

Unemployment is highest among the self-identified Roma ethnic group. More than half (51.2%) of economically active persons from this ethnic group were unemployed during the observed period. Every fifth economically active person aged 15-64 from the Turkish ethnic group was also unemployed during the observed period. This indicator is the lowest among self-identified Bulgarian ethnic groups - 8.4% of economically active persons.

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