In 2020, 197,242 people were part of the processes of internal migration. The largest number of migrants – or 21,320 people – have chosen the District of Plovdiv as their new place of residence. The regions with the largest relative share in the migration flow to Plovdiv District are: Sofia (capital) – 7.7%, Pazardzhik – 4.0% and Smolyan – 3.7%.
According to NSI’s latest report on population and demographics processes for 2020, 37,364 people have changed their current address from abroad to Bulgaria last year. 47.6% of the returned Bulgarians are under the age of 39, while as many as 80% of them being of working age (under 59). Nearly 3,000 of them have moved to Plovdiv, which makes the total value of new settlers in the area – over 24 000 people.
For the city of Plovdiv itself, the statistics are also record-breaking – over 9,000 people have chosen the city for their new home, that’s 1500 more than 2019. The pandemic situation in 2020, however, creates a precondition for the emergence of a strong trend of outflow of inhabitants from cities to villages and smaller settlements. According to the NSI, the largest territorial traffic in the country is in the direction “city to village” (48.4%). The Plovdiv region is also affected by this trend. The mechanical growth of the city shows a negative value of -4077 people. On the other hand, almost all small settlements in the region show high values of mechanical growth, such as the municipalities of Maritsa and Rodopi where the flow is extremely high – +4469 inhabitants. This trend, however, was anticipated. During the past few years, the region has become an attractive center for people seeking career development. The fact that Plovdiv is the industrial leader of Bulgaria with nearly 75,000 employees in manufacturing and the second IT&Outsourcing center with over 7,000 employees in the sector, motivates thousands of people to settle in the city or in the neighboring municipalities in the metropolis. In the conditions of a pandemic, many migrants prefer to buy property in the smaller towns in the outskirts of the city. By doing so they are close to the jobs and services offered by the big city, while still maintaining the privacy provided by the smaller places. Given this, the Municipality of Plovdiv plans a large-scale development of relations with its neighboring municipalities where hundreds of Bulgarian and foreign manufacturing companies offer attractive jobs.
Over 500 000 people live in Plovdiv and its nearest towns/villages according to the NSI (which, however, cannot report people without registration). The Plovdiv District is home to 666 398 officially registered residents who represent 9.6% of the population of Bulgaria.