It’s believed that Bulgaria is EU’s poorest country because it has the lowest GDP/capita of all 28 member states. The formula for calculating GDP/capita is the country’s GDP divided by its population. But is this really an accurate depiction?
Let’s take two families equal in all dimensions (monthly earnings, number of working parents) and different in only one – number of kids. If both families have a monthly income of EUR 6000 but one of them has one kid while the other two kids then GDP per capita of the first family will be EUR 2000 while of the second EUR 1500.
If we say that Bulgaria is EU’s poorest country because it has the lowest GDP/capita we will be wrong. GDP per worker is a better indicator as some EU countries such as Bulgaria, Latvia and Lithuania have extremely unfavorable ratio between labor force and total population. Demographic problems make the comparison between countries on this criterion distorted. Below is an example featuring two EU countries (Bulgaria, Poland) and one European non-EU country (Belarus).