Building Knowledge for a Concerted and Sustainable Approach to Refugee Resettlement in the EU and its Member States

Legal and administrative framework

Bulgaria

The Law on Asylum and Refugees (2002) regulates all procedures and mechanisms for granting asylum, refugee and humanitarian status, while the Law for Foreigners (1998) regulates the entry, stay and exit of foreigners. Bulgaria concluded an Agreement with UNHCR in 1993 but it does not contain any reference to resettlement. The Order N° P-57/03.03.2010 of the Prime Minister (not available) established an Intergovernmental Task Force on Resettlement with the objective to create a draft pilot resettlement programme. Bulgaria is now in the process of drafting this pilot programme, which should be implemented in 2013.

Laws

* Law on Asylum and Refugees (2002)

Abstract

The Law on Asylum and Refugees was published in the State Gazette No. 54/31 May 2002, and amended by State Gazette No. 39/20 May 2011. The Law regulates all procedures and mechanisms for granting asylum, refugee and humanitarian status. It does not contain any specific provision on resettlement.

Files attached to this content:

Law on Asylum and Refugees (2002) in Bulgarian

Law on Asylum and Refugees (2002) in English

* Law for Foreigners (1998)

Abstract

The Law for Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria was published in the State Gazette No. 153/23, December 1998, and amended by State Gazette No. 43/7 June 2011.

It regulates the entry, stay and exit of foreigners in Bulgaria. It does not contain any specific provision on resettlement.

Files attached to this content:

Law for the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria (1998) in Bulgarian

Law for the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria (1998) in English

UNHCR agreements

* Agreement between the UNHCR and Bulgaria (1993)

Abstract

This is an Agreement between the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and the Government of the Republic of Bulgaria. The Agreement entered into force on the date of its signature: 22 July 1993. Article 2(1) 1 provides that:

“Co-operation between the Government and UNHCR in the field of international protection of and humanitarian assistance to refugees and other persons of concern to UNHCR shall be carried out on the basis of (i) the Statute of UNHCR, (ii) other relevant decisions and resolutions relating to UNHCR adopted by United Nations organs, and (iii) article 35 of the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees of 1951 and article 2 of the Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees of 1967."

The Agreement does not contain any reference to resettlement.

Files attached to this content:

UNHCR agreement (1993) in English

Decisions

* Bulgaria: Council of Ministers Decision (2012)

Abstract
 
Council of Ministers Protocol No.18340/13.06.2012 Regarding draft decision on the adoption of the report of the intergovernmental working group appointed by Order № P-57 of the Prime Minister on 30 March 2010, regarding the position of Bulgaria in the EU Resettement Programme.
 
This decision is linked below. It is available only in Bulgarian but is summarised here:
 
On 13 June 2012 the government voted in favour of a formal decision to adopt and implement a Pilot Resettlement Program for refugees who were recognised under the UNHCR mandate in third countries. The responsible institution is the State Agency for Refugees. According to the Law on Asylum and Refugees the UNHCR mandate status holders automatically shall receive a recognition in Bulgaria as well as a refugee status.

Working Group on Resettlement is convoked on 18.10.2012 to work out a final Pilot Project on Resettlement where the exact parameters of the process and the profile of refugees to be resettled will be specified. The final draft Pilot project should be ready by the end of October 2012.

First resettlement activities will begin in 2013 and will include the development of the administrative capacity. They will be fully funded by the annual program 2012 of the ERF. There is a quota of 20 refugees to be resettled in 2014.
 

Files attached to this content:

Council of Ministers Decision on Joint EU Resettlement Programme (2012) In Bulgarian

Bulgaria snapshot

Size: 111,910 km2

Population: 7.6 million

Year of EU Entry: 2007

In the Schengen Area: No

Protection Status Granted: 192 (2011)

Resettlement Scheme: Programme to be implemented in 2014

Resettlement Quota: 20 to 25 refugees

Resettled Refugees: 0

Source: The information about the size, population, in the Schengen area, and year of EU entry is taken from europa.eu.