an administrative territorial unit in northwest Bulgaria. Area, 4,200 sq km. Population, 300,000 (1969). Its administrative center is the city of Vratsa.
The larger, northern part of Vratsa District is situated on the Lower Danubian Plain. The southern part is within the Stara Planina (Balkan Mountains) and its northern foothills. The principal rivers are the Ogosta, Skut, and Iskur. The climate is moderate continental; the annual precipitation totals approximately 600 mm. There are massifs of oak and (in the mountains) beech forests; near the Danube the vegetation is of the steppe variety.
The Vratsa District is an industrial and agricultural region. During the years of socialist development branches of industry were established that utilized local natural resources —natural gas, ore deposits of nonferrous metals, and raw material for cement. There is nonferrous metallurgy (in Eliseina) and the production of cement (in Beli-Izvor) and nitrogen fertilizers (near the city of Vratsa). Other industries include the pulp and paper (Miziia), textile (in the cities of Vratsa and Mezdra), and food industries. The machine-building industry is expanding. The first nuclear power plant in Bulgaria is under construction (1971) near the village of Kozlodui, on the shore of the Danube. Approximately 60 percent of the district’s territory is cultivated; part of the area is irrigated by the waters of the Danube and its tributary, the Iskur. The principal agricultural crops are wheat, corn, sunflowers, sugar beets,and tomatoes; there is also viticulture. Cattle and hogs are raised here. The Vratsa District supplies farm produce to Sofia and other regions. It has a railroad junction at Mezdra and a port on the Danube at Oriakhovo.
E. B. VALEV