Bulgaria is EU's third most unstable country, according to the Failed States Index 2011 of the US magazine Foreign Policy.
The latest, sixth edition of the annual ranking, prepared by the Fund for Peace non-profit organization and published by Foreign Policy, draws on some 130,000 publicly available sources to analyze 177 countries and rate them on 12 indicators of pressure on the state during the year 2010.
In 2011, Bulgaria ranks 130th out of a total of 177 countries, inching between Bahrain and Panama. Of all EU member states, only Cyprus and Romania occupy higher spots, meaning that they perform worse.
Bulgaria's performance has improved since 2010 on most of the indicators, except for "poverty, sharp or severe economic decline" and "rise of factionalized elites", according to Deutsche Welle as quoted by the Bulgarian Telegraph Agency (BTA).
The country's lowest score is on "legitimacy of the state" but it boasts the lowest risk of "massive movement of refugees and internally displaced persons".
Other indicators included in the methodology of the ranking are "mounting demographic pressures", "chronic and sustained human flight", "vengeance-seeking group grievance", "uneven economic development ", "progressive deterioration of public services", "violation of human rights and rule of law", "intervention of external actors" and "security apparatus".
According to Foreign Policy, Bulgaria is currently a "borderline" case, meaning that it holds a middle ground between "stable" and "in danger", which is the situation in Russia, Romania, Brazil, Libya, Saudi Arabia, India and Mexico.
The most unstable countries according to the 2011 index are Somalia, Chad, Sudan and Congo, with the most stable being Finland, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland.
Somalia has topped the Failed States Index for four years in a row./Source: Sofia News Agency/