More than 50 representatives of civil society and the social enterprise sectors in the Republic of Moldova participated in three consultation sessions organised by EU4Youth on 1-3 February, to discuss the recommendations for amending the legal framework in the field of social entrepreneurship in Moldova.
Social entrepreneurship in the Republic of Moldova is in the early stage of development. In the last ten years, about 48 social entrepreneurship initiatives have been launched, of which only four have obtained the official status of social enterprise and insertion. Although the regulatory framework for social entrepreneurship in the country is sufficiently explicit, it does not fully reflect the needs and aspirations of the field.
Aiming to enhance the legal framework, the EU4Youth project organised three online public hearings to consult the public’s opinions on the proposed amendments to the law on social entrepreneurship.
One of the proposals, which was put forward by the experts and chosen by the majority of the participants, was the elaboration of a special law, which would prioritise the topic of social entrepreneurship and allow it to be addressed through general legislation. The legislative framework should identify and develop supporting mechanisms for social economy entities, and create an enabling environment to address the specific needs of the social economy. Among these supporting mechanisms, participants particularly welcomed the proposal for the establishment of separate tax treatment for social enterprises/social insertion enterprises.
Other legal recommendations include encouraging at state level the procurement of goods, works and services from social enterprises and social insertion businesses through reserved contracts and developing incentives for companies that purchase goods, works and services from social/insertion enterprises.
On 16 February, the EU4Youth project will follow up on the public hearings by organising a National Conference on the legislative framework for social entrepreneurship, with an in-depth discussion of relevant legal norms, legislative basis and amendments. At the end of the conference, concrete legal suggestions to enhance the legislation on social entrepreneurship are expected to be finalised so they can be submitted and promoted to the relevant decision making bodies in the country next month.
The meetings were organised by the EU4Youth project ‘Unlocking the potential of young social entrepreneurs in Moldova and Ukraine’ (EUnlocking project), which is funded by the European Union and helps to foster the social entrepreneurial potential of young people in Moldova and Ukraine by establishing a favourable ecosystem for social enterprises, as well as by inspiring and supporting more young social entrepreneurs to develop and sustain their innovative solutions to the promotion of social inclusion and environmental sustainability across both countries.
The EUnlocking project is implemented by the Gustav Stresemann Institute e.V. (GSI) (Germany), Egalite International (Ukraine), AXA Management Consulting organisation (Moldova), ECO-RAZENI Association (Moldova), the National Assistance and Information Centre for NGOs in Moldova „CONTACT” (Moldova), and „Pro NGO! e.V” (Germany).