Kirklareli ( Turkey) - Burgas (Bulgaria) 

Description: The border line between Bulgaria and Turkey amounts to 288 km. Until 1990 the so called “border zone” (about 15 km) has a special regime of access for Bulgarian citizens. Today, there are 3 check points on the border: Malko Tărnovo-Dereköy,  Svilengrad-Kapıkule and Lesovo- Hamzabeyli. In 2005 it has been launched a common plan for constructing of 15 more check points on Bulgaria-Turkey border.
Kırklareli and Burgas are the two most industrialized areas in the border area between Turkey and Bulgaria. However, while in Burgas the level of economic activity is below the Bulgarian national average, Kırklareli is very dynamic compared to the Turkish national economy. The district of Burgas has the greatest prosperity mostly because of its seaport. Burgas is one of the most industrialized districts in Bulgaria. Industrial sectors of national importance are: chemical and petro-chemical, food processing, electric and thermoenergy, textile, shipbuilding.

In Kırklareli the economy is mainly rural, however, in the past few years industry has developed at a fast pace. Now it seems it is in a transition period from agriculture into industry. Agriculture has been among the leading economic sectors in the border region. The ownership structure is similar on both sides of the border, with a predominance of small-sized holdings.

Although tourism industry is another source for both Kırklareli and Burgas, it is more developed in Burgas than Kırklareli. The level of infrastructure for tourism is low in Kırklareli whereas in Burgas it is relatively high. However, Kırklareli’s natural beauty offers possibilities for sea and cultural tourism.

Both in Kırklareli and Burgas the rate of those employed with higher education is above the national average.

The report of Cross-Border Cooperation Programme sets the weaknesses in the border region as follows:
- Migration of qualified work force to big cities
- Concentration of economic activities in cities
- Low level of foreign investment
- Low agricultural productivity due to lack of modern farming techniques
- Natural resources not yet recognized as a potential source of income
- Insufficient experience and infrastructures in tourism the sector as well as historical monuments and archaeological sites on both sides of the border not adequately maintained and sometimes abandoned
- Diminishing water resources due to industrialization; cross-border rivers Maritca/Meric, Arda and Tundja very polluted and unfit for irrigation;
- Insufficient overall environmental monitoring

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Dr. James Scott
Project manager
Ph: (+358) 50366 0653
Project information
Project duration: 01.03.2011-28.02.2015
Lead partner: University of Eastern Finland
Total budget: 3 386 700 €
EU contribution: 2 644 090 €