Public Beneficiary Status

The Law for NGOs in Kosovo foresees the creation of a special status for a segment of NGOs, namely the Public Beneficiary Status. This status has a goal of promoting activities through which the general public shall benefit.

Although the citizens delegate the state with the obligation to organize and provide public services, countries with a developed democracy have recognized the fact that a number of services are addressed properly by the citizens themselves, through public beneficiary organizations. This comes as a consequence of the fact that these organizations are closer to the needs of the community and society. Furthermore, by not being as burdened by state bureaucratic procedures, they can react faster in accommodating the needs of community and provide quicker and more direct services. Since they supplement or even fully provide services that are an obligation of the state, the state provides them with a number of benefits for their activities, mainly through tax benefits and funding opportunities. On the other hand, since public beneficiary organizations are beneficiaries of direct or indirect assistance from the state, they are the subject of a larger control, with an aim of insuring that public support truly translates into public benefit.

During the last few years in Kosovo this status has been transfigured a lot as a consequence of the changes to the basic NGOs and tax laws. In general, because of the legal framework and of the practice created as a consequence, it can be said that mechanisms that are cross linked with public benefits in Kosovo do not operate as they should.