The Film industry in Bulgaria has been successfully working under quarantine exemption since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. This made possible for more than 80 international audio-visual productions to be safely serviced and completed in the country under the studios' safety protocols. The production service companies prioritise the safety of the cast and crew and have developed diversified protocols to meet the challenges.
The Ministry of Health is the governmental body with the task to administer all pandemic-related regulations. The Minister of Health issues orders with up-to-date requirements a few times a month, or as often as needed. This is a necessity in the rapidly changing epidemic environment. Ministry of Health is regularly publishing the orders on its website.
Upon your decision to start production in Bulgaria you will have to make sure to obtain all the necessary work permits required by the Law. The ЕU citizens do not need visas in order to work in Bulgaria. All others are required to follow the specific rules defined in the agreements between Bulgaria and the country. Your local line producer, or lawyer, usually, is to take care of the permits.
More detailed information can be found in the following links: Employment of Foreigners in Bulgaria - legal documents, Law for the Foreigners in the Republic of Bulgaria, The Labour Migration and Labour Mobility Act and its Rules of Procedures.
Under COVID-19 the entry requirements are changing often. Check the latest information from the Ministry of Health.
Los Angeles to Sofia - approximately 14 hours
New York City to Sofia - approximately 10 hours
London to Sofia - approximately 3 hours
Paris to Sofia - approximately 2.5 hours
Berlin to Sofia - approximately 2 hours
Madrid to Sofia - approximately 3 hours
For information on time zones, check here: https://www.worldtimebuddy.com/
The currency unit of the Republic of Bulgaria is the Lev (BGN).
In 1997 Bulgaria adopted a currency board and the fixed exchange rate to the Euro is 1 euro = BGN 1,95583.
Foreign currency can be exchanged in all banks and in any of the numerous exchange offices.
Film Production Companies are not VAT exempt. Any VAT they incur can be reclaimed by filing a VAT return (which can be done on a monthly or 3 months basis), but the actual VAT is not considered eligible expenditure for the cash rebate.
Bulgaria has a variety of visa permits available for foreign nationals seeking entry into the country. As a member of the European Union (EU), Bulgaria allows citizens of other EU member states to work without a visa or a permit.
For other foreign nationals, Bulgarian visas include:
More information here.
By dialing +359 before the Bulgarian area code and phone number. For example, the Bulgarian Film Commission contact number is +359 (2)9332305.