An agreement for "Coming Home" project was signed by the Vice-premier and Minister of Economy Nikolay Vassilev, the Head of the State agency of Bulgarians abroad Anton Piralkov and the Manager of JobTiger OOD Thomas Higgins.
1. What is “Coming Home” Project?
“Coming Home” Project is a long-term coordinated program between Bulgarian business, government, embassies and consulates, and other clubs and organizations interacting with Bulgarians abroad in order to help Bulgarians working and studying abroad to find the information they need to identify and obtain attractive employment opportunities in Bulgaria.
2. Brief Description of the Current Situation
At present there are about 3 million Bulgarians permanently living outside the country. They form a very diverse group of people in terms of their current geographical location, time of leaving the motherland, social status, age, values, and needs. Some very typical subgroups include:
- The Bulgarians in Ukraine, Moldova, and Romania (about 1 million people) who left Bulgaria more than a century ago to escape oppression. Most of them have preserved their Bulgarian cultural identity, habits, language, and religion.
- The Bulgarians in the Balkan countries (mainly Turkey, Greece, Macedonia, and Serbia). They have changed their location by their own decision, or have found themselves cut apart from Bulgaria by newly established borders between the Balkan countries.
- The youngest Bulgarian immigration. This subgroup has been formed during the past 12 years and is concentrated mostly in Western Europe and North America. By different statistics, this subgroup amounts to anywhere between 300,000 and 900,000 people.
While some of the above mentioned people might never settle back in Bulgaria, surely enough, there is a significant percentage of them that are willing to come home for good, to settle themselves here, and to contribute positively for the country’s political and economic future. Usually these are highly skilled and very well educated individuals, proven to be successful in their professional careers and personal life. It is believed that a pretty large number of young professionals, who have graduated abroad and/or have worked for internationally recognized companies are interested in coming back to Bulgaria and getting their future and the future of Bulgaria in their own hands.
Correspondingly, the third group of people (the youngest Bulgarian immigration to the West) is believed to be the natural target of this project.
In most cases the correct, fair, and systematically presented information about the current status of the Bulgarian labor market is critical for these people’s decision to return, live, and work in Bulgaria.
3. Objective of the Project
“The Bulgarian Dream” Programme of the Ministry of Economy, Job Tiger Ltd. and the Government Agency for Bulgarians abroad believe that young, well educated, and high achieving Bulgarian professionals currently working or studying abroad are one of the most precious resources of Bulgaria at present. The unique skills and organizational culture they are about to bring to our economy may turn out to be the most important element of a successful transition to a more prosperous future.
The goal of the “Coming Home” Project is to provide the critical element for the young professionals’ decision to come back to Bulgaria – the full, updated, and professionally presented information about the job market in Bulgaria. By using a professional and systematic approach, by creating the best comprehensive job bank and interactive information tools, and by using the most advanced technology, we hope that we will bring back home more young Bulgarian professionals. The positive consequences of this process should inevitably include attracting larger foreign investments to our country.