Published: Aug 28, 2020

Philanthropy blog – How old is philanthropy and where we are with the world?

Numerous studies have been done about the age of philanthropy. More than 4,000 years ago, the Chinese provided cash assistance to orphans and the elderly. The Jews gave one-tenth of their income for God and people in need. In many religions, this tradition continues even today. One of the five pillars in Islam is Zakat (giving 2.5% of income). This tells the importance that giving has in the religious aspect.

Religious beliefs had a major impact in the past. Even today, moral norms are undoubtedly influenced by religion, but, in some developed countries, this is a way of life, being also regulated by law, by deducting taxes from private companies that undertake activities for the common good, i.e. philanthropic activities.

In recent years, institutions in Kosovo have taken legal initiatives that regulate this topic.

Forum for Civic Initiatives, as the first and only foundation that has been dealing with philanthropy for more than 10 years, also putting pressure on local institutions to take steps to regulate legislation for this, last year published the analysis on legislation of Kosovo regarding philanthropy and NGOs.

This analysis has shown that the legislation on philanthropy in Kosovo is satisfactory, but there are delays in its implementation in practice, especially the financing of NGO projects by businesses has never been used enough. It should be noted that the level of allowable percentage of contributions had increased with the Law on CIT adopted in 2015 from 5% as defined by the previous law to 10%, and in specific cases taxpayers who will contribute in certain areas, this law allows up to 10% additional if provided by special laws in Kosovo. However, these provisions of the law have not been exploited by businesses, or at least minimally exploited, this nor the increase of the percentage from 5% to 10% or even 20% for specific cases, has not had any significant impact in the level of contributions from the business sector therefore businesses still need to be aware of their releases.

This blog is written by Arieta Dragusha, as part of the regional project SIGN Up for Impact, funded by the European Union, in Kosovo implemented by FIQ.

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