BCSDN, in partnership with European Center for Non-profit Law (ECNL), has published the third Regional Report on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development in Enlargement Countries, presenting the regional state of play of civil society in 2015 and highlighting the priorities for intervention by national and EU institutions at the regional level towards creating a more enabling environment for civil society.
According to the findings for 2015, the legal environment for CSOs in the Western Balkans and Turkey remained relatively stable. Freedom of association, assembly, expression and information continue to be legally guaranteed in all countries of the region with the exception of Turkey. Still, there are continuous challenges with inadequate implementation of the laws and lack of implementing bylaws. Repetitive crackdowns on the exercise of freedom of assembly and breaches of the legal guarantees were identified in the majority of the countries. CSOs continuously struggled to secure their financial sustainability in the whole region as fiscal regulations remain problematic. State support in 2014 was too often distributed through non-transparent mechanisms, and remained insufficient. Many countries reported that the dialogue with public authorities has deteriorated compared to 2014, particularly in the involvement of CSOs in the decision-making processes. The following are the key recommendations directed towards national governments and relevant EU institutions which are considered a priority for the region:
Key recommendations for national institutions:
Key recommendations for EU institutions:
The full Report is available for download here.