Although living conditions and social inclusion have gradually been improving, salaries in the district have stayed low, while a considerable part of total households’ incomes was generated by pensions. In 2015, unemployment fell and employment rose for the first time after the crisis; both indicators, however, were still below the national average levels. Kyustendil is among the districts which have attracted least FDI so far and whose municipalities have utilized the least amount of EU funds. The rate of local taxes and fees was among the lowest in the country, yet, the absence of transparency of local administrations has made the district less attractive in comparison with others.
As a result of the unfavorable demographic tendencies, the rate of natural increase of the population has continued to deteriorate. The educational system has been successful in enrolling a great part of those subject to compulsory education, though quality of education has been relatively low. There has been a certain shortage of specialist doctors in the district but the number of hospital beds is sufficient and the share of health-insured persons is high. Kyustendil has received the second lowest rating after Sofia (capital city) for security and justice because of high crime rates, slow justice administration, and low crime clearance rate. In the “Environment” category, the district is characterized by good connectivity to public sewerage systems and wastewater treatment plants on one hand, and, by strongly polluted air, on the other. Cultural life remains poorly developed compared with the other districts in the country.
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