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Decent work in Bulgaria

By Iskra Beleva and Vasil Tzanov

Abstract

This study develops the issue of Decent work in Bulgaria focusing on employment conditions e.g. employment contracts, working time, wages, health and safety at work place, access to training, conciliation of work and family, as well as some specific issues like child labour, in particular. When studying the effects of structural and technological transformations in Bulgaria on decent work environment the authors have paid special attention on the analysis of the interrelations and linkages between the different elements of decent work. Important aspect of the analysis is that of the relevance between some economic and social policies and the achieved progress. The development of socio-economic and political environment in Bulgaria in the period 1995-2006 outlines stable upward trend of improvement in work conditions. In some segments the improvement had been more visible, while in others – not. Irrespective of this, the ongoing debates on the issues and the more attention, paid by policy-makers on it, should be considered as a first step of the progress. As a second step we have to consider the more consistent and relevant character of the applied policies that were introduced since 2000. The study includes two parts. In the first it analyses the trends in the development of the elements of decent work in Bulgaria, numbered above. This analysis is based on the available statistics and in some cases it covers the period 1995-2006, but in others – it does not because of lack of regular statistical observations. The second part of the study deals with some interactions between the elements of decent work. They are analysed taking into consideration their multi-dimensional character and available statistical information. Some of the linkages and trade-offs are metrically assessed (where it is possible), while the others are based on qualitative assumptions and evaluations. As a result the study identifies the main vulnerable groups.employment condition, employment contract, working time, wages, health and safety at work place, access to training, conciliation of work and family

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