Bulgarian Workers Do Not Leave Greece Despite Debt Crisis

Greece - BulgariaDespite the high unemployment rate in Greece due to the current debt crisis, no wave of Bulgarians leaving the country to return to their homeland is observed, Bulgaria’s labor attaché to Greece Ekaterina Dimitrova told Focus Information Agency.

During the interview, Dimitrova did not try to hide her concerns regarding a possible return of Bulgarian workers to their homeland, claiming that such a potential could hamper the labor market in Bulgaria, burdening its social system. However, she seemed to rule out such a possibility, claiming that Bulgarians would rather travel to West Europe and Scandinavian countries in their effort to seek better life conditions than return home.

Asked about the protection of Bulgarian workers’ rights in Greece, Dimitrova replied: “After Bulgaria’s accession in the EU, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy established and keeps an effective bilateral cooperation with the Greek Ministry of Labor. There are good labor contacts between the competent authorities in Bulgaria and Greece.”

“Back in 2010, the two Ministries inked an agreement, which turned out to be very useful for the Bulgarian workers in Greece at the moment. It is an agreement on the cooperation in the field of working conditions and protection of the labor rights of the citizens of the two countries working in a partnership country. There are problems only for those working illegally.”