Bulgaria's ICT Sector Turnover Trebled over Last Seven Years - Deputy Economy Minister
Sofia, March 12 (BTA) - A European Conference entitled "EURONET-Italian Networking around Europe: INnovation and INTERNATIONalization in DIGITAL SOCIETY within the Bulgarian Presidency of EU 2018" opened here on Monday.
"The ICT sector in Bulgaria increased its turnover by 300 per cent over the last seven years, reaching 2,500 million euro," Bulgarian Deputy Economy Minister Alexander Manolev said at the opening of the event, quoted by his Ministry in a press release.
"The digital transformation age is setting in and has the potential to change business and society radically. That is why people should work realizing that they should not lag behind the inevitable processes of economic digitization," Manolev pointed out. In his words, since ICT sector development is a sort of barometer for those processes, Bulgaria has a good start.
According to Eurostat, the gross value added by the ICT sector stands at 1,140 million euro and is growing steadily. The latest statistics show that the sector employs some 51,000 people, and this number has by 7 per cent since last year.
In spite of the positive figures, the Deputy Economy Minister does not think this is sufficient as a number of Bulgarian economic sectors are barely or not at all digitized. "Small and medium-sized enterprises are among the worst laggards in this respect," Manolev said, adding that a common strategy for the implementation of Industry 4.0 products, technologies, business models and processes is being developed.
Taking part in the event, which is on the calendar of the Bulgarian EU Council Presidency, were the Minister for the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union Liliyana Pavlova, Italian Ambassador to Bulgaria Stefano Baldi, the Head of the European Commission Representation in Bulgaria Ognian Zlatev, and Sofia Investment Agency Executive Director Vladimir Danailov.