The Center for Civil Society Promotion (CCSP) and the Balkan Civil Society Development Network are pleased to present the fifth report of the Monitoring Matrix on Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development, regarding the developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina throughout 2019.
The report is part of a series of country reports covering seven countries in the Western Balkans and Turkey: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia.
According to the findings for 2019, there is no unified mechanism for allocation of public funds to CSO – current mechanisms depend on the level of authority and the institution allocating funds; There is a lack of harmonization of the Associations and Foundation Law in accordance to the MONEYVAL and FATF recommendations and absence of legislation on volunteers at the level of BiH; The public is not adequately informed nor involved in the decision-making processes and positive practice of e-Consultation platform at the Council of Ministers; The Rules of Consultation formally provide CSOs with timely access to the draft documents and participation in the preparation of given legal documents, but this is substantially different in practice; Political pressure and intimidation of journalists continued, including physical and verbal attacks. Draft Law on Public Gatherings in the RS was withdrawn after pressures of the CSOs and the international community; The citizens do not reach CSOs or their networks adequately partly because the respective funds are not corresponding with their needs and because civil society does not have the capacities strengths. Also, the public does not see the civil sector as the actors for changes in BiH.
The report provides recommendations, alluding to establish a unified mechanism for transparent funding of CSO programmes and projects from the budget that would incorporate rules on the required stages of the funding cycle into administrative by-laws; Revise Associations and Foundation Law in FBiH, RS, and Brčko Distrikt, as well as harmonize them mutually with the law at the BiH level; Incorporate and implement the e-consultation system, already established at the Council of Ministers BiH, at all lower levels of FBiH, RS and Cantons, to provide better participation of citizens and the general public; In cooperation with CSOs, produce the Strategy for Creation of an Enabling Environment for the Development and Sustainability of Civil Society, along with a State-level Action plan for its implementation, monitoring & evaluation, and impact assessment.
The report is part of the activities of the Project “Protecting Civic Space – Regional Civil Society Development Hub”, financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and implemented by the Balkan Civil Society Development Network (BCSDN) in cooperation with its member organizations in the countries of the Western Balkans.
Read more and download the report in the English language here.