VARTANYAN E.G. Development of Political, Economic and Cultural Relations Between Arab Countries and Bulgaria (The End of the 19th – 20th Centuries)


Egnara G. Vartanyan

Doctor of Sciences (History), Professor,

Department of World History and International Relations, Kuban State University,

Stavropolskaya St, 149, 350040 Krasnodar, Russian Federation

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Abstract. Introduction. The article is devoted to the development of relations between Bulgaria and the Arab countries in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The development of relations between Bulgaria and the countries of the Arab East is of interest in the context of the study of the forms, directions of cooperation, reasons for the mutual interest of peoples heterogeneous in ethno-confessional and cultural terms.

Methods and materials. The historical-typological, historical-systemic methods and the civilizational approach used in the article allow to analyze the process of the emergence, development and transformation of the Bulgarian-Arab relations in political, trade, economic, cultural areas.

Analysis. Before World War II the international mechanisms were being created for the further development of trade, economic, and political ties between the Arab states and Bulgaria together with infrastructure and sea transport routes. The problems in the development of Bulgarian-Arab relations were caused by the difficulties in forecasting of the processes, which were often subordinate to the subjective factor, personal ambitions and emotions of Arab leaders. Bulgarian diplomacy demonstrated the great patience to maintain relations that met the country’s interests. The cooperation between Bulgaria and the Arab countries developed in various forms with noticeable positive dynamics. Political changes in a number of Arab countries and inter-Arab conflicts did not fundamentally affect relations, but caused only temporary difficulties. Despite the fact that the systemic changes, which occurred in Bulgaria in the 1990s, became a restraining factor in the development of the Bulgarian-Arab relations, they were restored due to the mutual interests of the states at the turn of the 20th – 21st centuries.

Results. It is concluded that Bulgaria had established diplomatic relations with almost all Arab countries by 1960. The main direction of development of ties until the 1990s was dictated by political and ideological considerations, but trade and economic relations often preceded political ones. Bulgaria had gone beyond the traditional exchange of goods and switched to such forms of cooperation as construction, engineering design, tourism, culture, exchange of specialists, and personnel training. At the end of the 20th century Bulgarian leadership returned to the development of relations with Arab countries, which was dictated by the needs of the market economy development, new political realities and Bulgaria’s attempts to identify its place in the modern world.

Key words: Bulgaria, Arab countries, relations, cooperation, diplomatic relations, trade.

Citation. Vartanyan E.G. Development of Political, Economic and Cultural Relations Between Arab Countries and Bulgaria (The End of the 19th – 20th Centuries). Vestnik Volgogradskogo gosudarstvennogo universiteta. Seriya 4. Istoriya. Regionovedenie. Mezhdunarodnye otnosheniya [Science Journal of Volgograd State University. History. Area Studies. International Relations], 2022, vol. 27, no. 1, pp. 174-185. (in Russian). DOI:

Лицензия Creative Commons

Development of Political, Economic and Cultural Relations Between Arab Countries and Bulgaria (The End of the 19th – 20th Centuries) by Vartanyan E.G. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Download this file (2_Vartanyan.pdf) 2_Vartanyan.pdf