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Bulgaria is safer than most European countries with regard to violent crime, and the presence of such groups is slowly declining. Pickpocketing and scams are present on a wider scale, so be careful, especially in crowded places . It is strong (40% vol) clear brandy that is most commonly made from grapes or plums. However, there are as many varieties of the alcohol as there are fruit. Some of the best special selections are either made of apricots, or pears, or cherries, or peaches.

Generally, during the Summer, most people generally sit outside, which makes matters less worse. As this is a seasonally-changing obstacle, it’s best to stay on guard. Since 2012, smoking is prohibited in public places, including bars and restaurants, but restrictions are rarely followed. According to the reports of the Agency for Fundamental Rights , Bulgaria is the country with the least tolerance of LGBT people in the European Union for 2009 and 2011. After mass protests at the end of 2017 and the beginning of 2018, the Istanbul Convention was officially rejected. Be careful in conversations and refrain from public displays of affection with same-sex partners — otherwise you could be attacked by skinheads or nationalists.

The ministries of defence, the interior and justice are allocated the largest share of the annual government budget, whereas those responsible for the environment, tourism and energy receive the least funding. CestovatelskeNovinky Bulgaria has some of the lowest corporate income tax rates in the EU at a flat 10% rate. Value added tax, excise duties, corporate and personal income tax are national, whereas real estate, inheritance, and vehicle taxes are levied by local authorities. Strong economic performance in the early 2000s reduced government debt from 79.6% in 1998 to 14.1% in 2008.

This prevented Byzantine attempts at Hellenisation and created fertile ground for further revolt. In 1185, Asen dynasty nobles Ivan Asen I and Peter IV organised a major uprising and succeeded in re-establishing the Bulgarian state. Ivan Asen and Peter laid the foundations of the Second Bulgarian Empire with its capital at Tarnovo.

It was involved in the development of the Granat gamma-ray observatory and the Vega program, particularly in modelling trajectories and guidance algorithms for both Vega probes. Bulgarian instruments have been used in the exploration of Mars, including a spectrometer that took the first high quality spectroscopic images of Martian moon Phobos with the Phobos 2 probe. Another lunar mission, SpaceIL’s Beresheet, was also equipped with a Bulgarian-manufactured imaging payload. Bulgaria’s first geostationary communications satellite—BulgariaSat-1—was launched by SpaceX in 2017. Bulgaria has some of the largest Natura 2000 areas in Europe covering 33.8% of its territory.

The Criminal Police General Directorate is in charge of serious crime investigations at national level. The Security Police General Directorate is in charge of public order and the protection of people and property. By providing globally-sourced intelligence about regional crime trends, the NCB helps police officers across Bulgaria detect and investigate the flow of illicit goods along trafficking routes in and around the country.

Bulgarian media were described as generally unbiased in their reporting in the early 2000s and print media had no legal restrictions. Since then, freedom of the press has deteriorated to the point where Bulgaria scores 111th globally in the World Press Freedom Index, lower than all European Union members and membership candidate states. The government has diverted EU funds to sympathetic media outlets and bribed others to be less critical on problematic topics, while attacks against individual journalists have increased.

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